Monday, November 24, 2014
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Burglary at St. Benedict's Store does not rob owners of their compassion

GREER -- Even a Catholic bookstore isn’t safe from crime.

St. Benedict’s Catholic Store was the victim of a burglary sometime during the early morning hours of Oct. 16.

Someone broke into a back window of 900 West Poinsett St., headed straight for the office and stole containers of change and small donations for things like coffee, said Kipp McIntyre, who owns and runs the store along with his wife, Stephanie. The thieves left with no more than $40.

“They were so quick there was a line of nickels and dimes strewn around the back yard and into the neighboring yard,” McIntyre said. “It was mostly rolled coins, dimes and nickels.”

The window has since been repairedNo religious objects were disturbed, damaged or taken. St. Benedict’s carries books and Bibles as well as statues, jewelry, rosaries and other items.

“There was nothing else out of place,” he said. “What we consider a miracle is there was a statue of the Blessed Mother wearing a lace mantilla not inches from the window that was smashed. There was glass all across the store and the statue was not touched.”

The incident took place less than a week after the store’s two-year anniversary. It opened on Oct. 10, 2012, a result of the couple’s mutual vision to help more people learn about the faith.

So far there are no suspects, but local police are still investigating.

Community outreach has been part of St. Benedict’s mission since it opened, and the McIntyres have been moved by an outpouring of support and sympathy. Local people stopped by to check on them and also helped with donations to repair the estimated $1,000 cost of fixing the window, which has already been replaced.

“The experience has helped us carry on the community conversation about what it means to be Catholic today,” Mr. McIntyre said. “We live the Gospel and we try everything we can to help folks see in us the tangible benefits of being a practicing Catholic.”

Many people who stop by are outraged that thieves would target a religious store, but the owners are urging everyone not to be angry, but instead to pray for those who committed the crime.



Ask about religious callings during Vocations Awareness Week

SOUTH CAROLINA—People who have joined the priesthood or entered religious life are typically encouraged to do so by at least three people, according to a study conducted by the Georgetown University-based Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate.

“When three or more people encourage someone to consider a religious vocation, he or she is far more likely to take serious steps toward answering that call,” said Father Shawn McKnight, USCCB’s executive director of Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations.

So if you know someone who may have a calling to consecrated life, don’t hesitate to tell them and support that potential — you could be the difference in someone choosing to become a priest, brother or sister.
In fact, during National Vocations Awareness Week celebrated Nov. 2-8, the diocesan This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it is challenging everyone to ask three young people if they have ever thought about the priesthood or religious life, said This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

He said it is amazing how many students are never asked that question, even in Catholic schools.

“It’s surprising how many students there are, even in college, who haven’t heard that word — and they’re Catholic — and they haven’t heard of vocations,” Gaeta said.

So talk to your children, talk to your students, talk to the kid sitting next to you in church.

It is just one of many things people can do to support vocations.

It’s also important for youth to see priests and religious sisters as real people, so encourage your children to ask questions and talk to their pastor about his own childhood and how he followed God’s call, Gaeta said.
In addition to nurturing the discernment process, Gaeta said the diocese’s seminarians also need support.

There are currently 12 men engaged in the process. Read their profiles at and say a personal prayer for them.

“Praying for them is the No. 1 way to provide support,” Gaeta said.

He also encourages people to write letters to the seminarians, noting that their addresses can be found on the website.

Another suggestion from the USCCB advises each person to reflect on their own vocation and strengthen their personal relationship with Christ, and educate young people about the importance of silent prayer and taking the time to truly listen to God’s voice in our hearts.

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People & events


Fall Craft Market
CHARLESTON—St. Joseph Church, 1695 Wallenberg Blvd., will host its Fall Craft Market on Oct. 25 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Admission and parking free.

Craft fair
MOUNT PLEASANT—St. Benedict women’s group will hold a craft fair Oct. 25 from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Oct. 26 from noon to 4 p.m. at 950 Darrell Creek Trail.

Walk for Life
NORTH CHARLESTON—The Lowcountry Walk for Life will be Nov. 1 at 10 a.m. at Wannamaker County Park. Register at Details: (843) 863-1510 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Religious freedom speaker
CHARLESTON—KrisAnne Hall will speak at the Pauline Books and Media Center on Nov. 8 from 1-3 p.m. on the U.S. Constitution and the fight for religious freedom. Free. Refreshments will be served. Call, (843) 607-2705.

Oyster Roast and Chili Cook-Off
SUMMERVILLE—The Summerville Catholic School Father’s Association will host an Oyster Roast and Chili Cook-Off school fundraiser on Nov. 8 at 5 p.m. at 226 Black Oak Blvd. Tickets: $20 each, or $30 a family up to four. May be purchased at the gate, or call the school, (843) 873-9310.


Homes for the Holidays
BEAUFORT—The Homes for the Holidays tour, benefiting St. Peter School’s tuition assistance fund, will be Nov. 22-23. Six private homes on Distant Island will be decorated by local designers. Tickets: $25. Purchase at the event, participating businesses or St. Peter. The Nov. 21 gala, “A Night Under the Stars,” includes dancing, a silent auction, and catered meal. Gala tickets: $75 each. Call (843) 522-6510.

Talk on Magnolia Cemetery
BEAUFORT—Patrick Harwood, author of “Arms of Angels: Magnolia Cemetery - Charleston’s Treasure of History, Mystery and Artistry”, will speak on Nov. 3 from 6:30-8 p.m. at St. Peter Church hall, 70 Lady’s Island Drive. Book available for $40. Contact: Barbara Stanley, (843) 525-0994 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Notre Dame Club golf outing
HILTON HEAD ISLAND—The Notre Dame Club of Hilton Head will hold a golf outing Nov. 4 with a 12:30 p.m. shotgun start at Sea Pines Country Club. Cocktails and dinner at 5:30 p.m. Cost: $140/player, or $125/player for couples, includes cart, dinner and prizes. Dinner for nongolfers: $50. Contact: Bob Albertini, (843) 363-2325 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .


Cardinal Bernardin lectures
COLUMBIA—Benedictine Sister Joan Chittister, writer and lecturer, will speak on the “Uncommon Search for Common Ground” on Oct. 28 at 6 p.m. at the USC Law School auditorium as part of the 15th annual Joseph Cardinal Bernardin lectures. Free, open to the public.

Cardinal Newman open house
COLUMBIA—Cardinal Newman School will hold an open house Nov. 5-6 from 6-8 p.m. at 4701 Forest Drive. Details: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or (803) 782-2814.

Trip to Billy Graham Library
COLUMBIA—St. Joseph Senior Life Group will host a bus trip to Charlotte to visit the Billy Graham Library and Museum and the Daniel Stowe Botanical Gardens on Dec. 12. Cost: $80, includes bus, admission, meal and gratuity. Deposit of $40 due by Oct. 31. Registration: Sister Julienne Guy, (803) 540-1901.

Single, Single Again
AIKEN—Single, Single Again will host an All Hallowed Eve Ghost Walk and Illusion Show in Living History Park in North Augusta on Oct. 25. Details: Carla Noziglia, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , or Jeanne Shanks, (803) 663-3839.

St. Peter School info session
COLUMBIA—St. Peter School will hold an information session for parents on Nov. 6 at 12:15 p.m. Contact: Emily Hero, (803) 779-0036 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Knights yard sale
AIKEN—The Knights of Columbus will hold a yard sale Nov. 7-8 from 8 a.m. to noon at 1003 Spaulding Drive.

St. John Neumann gala
COLUMBIA—St. John Neumann will host “A Silver Celebration” on Nov. 8 from 6-10 p.m. in the gym. Cost, $35 each, or $100 for two tickets and entry into free tuition drawing. Includes live and silent auction, food and music. Call (803) 788-1367 or visit


Arts and crafts festival
PAWLEYS ISLAND—Precious Blood of Christ women’s club will host their arts and crafts festival Oct. 24 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Oct. 25 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the parish center, 1633 Waverly Road. Features crafters, food and used book sale. Call (843) 237-3428.

‘Crafting by the Sea’
NORTH MYRTLE BEACH—The Crafters & Quilters of Our Lady Star of the Sea Church, 1100 Eighth Ave. N. , will hold “Crafting by the Sea”on Oct. 31 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Nov. 15 from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Nov. 2 from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Featuring crafted gifts and eat-in or take-out foods.

Rummage sale
CONWAY—The St. James ladies guild will hold its annual rummage sale Nov. 1 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Founders’ Center, 1071 Academy Drive.


St. Anthony School open house
GREENVILLE—St. Anthony of Padua School will hold its open house for K-3 through sixth grade on Nov. 11 from 3-7 p.m. Tour the school, ask questions, and meet faculty and staff. Call (864) 271-0167.

Holiday Craft Sale
EASLEY—St. Luke Church, 4408 S. Carolina 86, will hold its Holiday Craft Sale on Nov. 8 from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Nov. 9 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. All items are handmade.

PEOPLE & EVENTS includes items of general interest and events that are open to the statewide community. To send a notice, please include time, date, location address, city and contact email and/or phone number with area code. Items are run at the editor’s discretion and publication or frequency is not guaranteed. Send notices at least three weeks in advance of publication date to: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . For details visit and click on submit news.


Diocese passes audit for charter compliance

CHARLESTON—Once again, the Diocese of Charleston has been found compliant with the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People established by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.
All U.S. dioceses and eparchies are audited every year with an on-site visit every third year. StoneBridge Business Partners spent two days at the chancery earlier this month reviewing documentation on how safe environment programs are run and how the charter is processed through the diocesan policy concerning allegations of sexual misconduct or abuse of a minor by church personnel. The auditors are engaged by the USCCB and are a private firm.
“Being in compliance means that we meet criteria set by the charter for creating and maintaining safe environments for children,” said Bonnie Sigers, manager of the Safe Environment program for the diocese. “There are 17 articles, the most well-known being the background screening and education piece, which we surpassed.”
The diocesan policy is derived from the charter and requires every employee and every volunteer with access to children to have a background screening and receive education on the prevention of sexual abuse of minors.
In the United States, one in four girls and one in six boys will be sexually abused before their 18th birthday. The Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People was established in 2002 by the U.S. bishops to create comprehensive procedures addressing allegations of sexual abuse of minors by Catholic clergy. It includes guidelines for reconciliation, healing, accountability, and prevention of future acts of abuse by creating a safe environment for children and young people.
“The charter and the Diocese of Charleston believe the screening and educational components of our policy create an atmosphere where abuse is less likely to happen,” Sigers said. “We believe that we do directly impact incidences of child sexual abuse due to our safe environment program, and limiting access to those who work and volunteer with our children. And we do.”
For more information about the Safe Environment Program, diocesan policy or the charter, visit


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