Plagiarism by former SKC columnist

Former SKC columnist, Sister Irene Hartman, OP, has been found to have plagiarized at least 25 of the columns she provided to the SKC. For more than a decade, Sister Irene provided dozens of weekly columns under the title “Holy Ones of Our Times,” and the earlier title, “Charisms”.

It has been discovered that at least 25 of her columns were taken in part from the work of Robert Ellsberg, author of All Saints, Blessed Among All Women, and Blessed Among Us (a collected volume of his work that appeared in the publication Give Us This Day).

According to Give Us This Day editor Mary Stommes, a reader recently called their attention to one instance of potential plagiarism, which led to a more careful review and the discovery that, “Sister Irene not only copied many of Mr. Ellsberg’s words, but she also copied his method of expanding our understanding of saintliness in the range and breadth of those portrayed.”

One article reviewed by the SKC contained phrasing identical to that used in a column by Mr. Ellsberg, whose column was written more than a decade prior to Sister Irene’s.  The SKC trusts fully that the research completed by Liturgical Press, the publishing house of Give Us This Day, is accurate. Therefore, the Catholic has removed all of Sister Irene’s columns from our website, including the issues in which they were contained.

“As a 20-year columnist, I would like to offer my personal apologies to Mr. Ellsberg,” said Dave Myers, SKC editor. “I can’t begin to imagine how I would feel had I encountered someone using my columns in such a way. Ms. Stommes and Mr. Ellsberg have been extremely gracious in their response to this serious issue.”

Sister Irene died at age 95 on Aug. 17, 2017. The SKC urges readers to take a moment to view the books written by Mr. Ellsberg, the links of which are included above.  Coverage will appear in the April 7 SKC.

 

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March 24, 2019

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   The Dead Sea Scrolls series

 

   St. Nicholas School, Kinsley, Advent Cantata, Dec. 7, 2008

 

   

 

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Social Work and the Catholic Church

Just how involved should the Church be in people’s lives?

By David Myers
Editor
Just how involved in people’s lives should the Catholic Church be?
Offering financial guidance? Classes for teenage moms? What about helping provide a roadmap to citizenship for undocumented immigrants?
“Over the past 50 years, thousands of lives have been positively impacted here in southwest Kansas as a result of the agency and its staff, board members, volunteers and donors,” said Debbie Snapp, Executive Director of Catholic Social Service.
“Because of the work and foresight of those who helped to initiate this agency and its activities half a century ago, children have grown up in loving adoptive ‘forever’ homes, the hungry have been fed, the homeless have found shelter, individuals and families caught in the grip of addictions have been healed, and those facing a lifetime of poverty have achieved goals and self-sufficiency.”
In other words, there can’t be too much involvement in the lives of people in need.
Over the years, CSS has employed social workers who are given the daunting task of guiding, evaluating, and helping individuals and families through a mountain of emotional, physical, and bureaucratic issues. It’s not a job for the timid.
Rhonda Goodloe, LMSW (Licensed Master Social Worker) works out of the Garden City CSS office. As “Marriage for Keeps” regional coordinator, she offers married couples a weekend retreat in which to celebrate and refresh their marriage. She also directs the “Within My Reach” program, which offers individuals management skills for any relationship, whether with a loved one or a boss.
Why is this program part of Catholic social teaching?
“In the social work field there are many values that closely align with teaching of the Church,” Goodloe explained.  Quoting one of the core teachings of social workers, she said, “ ‘Each person, regardless of position in society, has basic human rights, such as freedom, safety, privacy, an adequate standard of living, health care, and education.   Social workers recognize the global interconnections of oppression and are knowledgeable about theories of justice and strategies to promote human and civil rights.  Social work incorporates social justice practices in organizations, institutions, and society to ensure that these basic human rights are distributed equitably and without prejudice.’ 
“This is one of the competencies that is taught to social workers,” she explained. “Working at Catholic Social Service, we practice this daily with the people we serve.”
Snapp, like the three other social workers employed by CSS -- Amy Falcon, Goodloe, and Lori Titsworth --  can be found serving as a representative of the Catholic Church in unexpected places.
Soon after the violent tornado struck Greensburg and the surrounding region in May 4, 2007, CSS began working with other agencies to provide needed help.
“We primarily distributed the donations that were received through CSS and the diocese to help individuals build or repair homes when they had no other resources to do that,” commented Snapp.  “We worked with the South Central Kansas Tornado Recovery Organization (a part of the Kiowa Ministerial Alliance) to determine eligibility.  We also used some of that money to help with emergency needs -- replacing eye glasses, prescriptions, etc….”
If not in the wind-swept borders of Greensburg, Snapp was teaching JustFaith, a scripture-based program of workshops designed to “form, inform and transform people of faith by offering programs and resources that sustain them in their compassionate commitment to build a more just and peaceful world.”
Through prayer, immersion experiences, books and videos, participants encountered the “face of poverty and were drawn to respond to the needs of a broken world.”
Though this program is not currently being taught in the diocese, its teachings are constantly being put into action.  
Among Falcon’s ministries is pregnancy counseling, in which an often young – and often frightened -- parent, or parents, will come to her looking for alternatives to abortion.  
“The counseling helps them to truly consider each of their options and helps them to feel good about their decision, whether it is to make an adoption plan or a parenting plan,” Falcon said in an earlier interview.
She recalls the occasion when she helped two scared high school students: “They were both high school seniors and were involved in sports/cheerleading, etc.... They decided that they wanted to make an adoption plan and were able to select a family from our program.”
Falcon only works with open adoptions, in which the birth parent continues to have a relationship with their child, even after they’ve been adopted.
“They met the family and started forming a relationship with them. They and their families became very close to this adoptive family; the birth mom even went to college in the town they lived in. I continued providing counseling to this birth mom for a year and a half after the birth of her child.
“I know that this birth mom struggled with her emotions for quite a while after the birth and relinquishment of her child. It takes approximately a year for them to really go through the grieving process. I think that the counseling helped her to get through those difficult times.”
The Teen Moms program, which was introduced to the Diocese of Dodge City by Falcon in 2000, is designed to restore the promise, possibilities, and, not to mention, the sense of fun into the life of a teenager who is a parent.
“Part of our ministry – of all the ministries of Catholic Social Service – is to be there for people in need, for any person, including a pregnant teen who doesn’t have a neutral place to go. As a church, we are supposed to help and serve in any way we can.”
Like Falcon, Lori Titsworth, who works out of the Great Bend office, has the joy of bringing children into the lives of adoptive parents, and helping someone who is struggling with an unplanned or unwanted pregnancy to find an adoptive family. As Falcon explained, the birth parent no longer has to go through the traumatic experience of handing their child to an adoptive family, never to see them again.
“They know their child will be placed in a faith-based family,” Titsworth explained. “I believe so many times that people are interested in adoption but believe it is too expensive, there is a long waiting list, or they have a misunderstanding of adoption, let alone an ‘open adoption. We provide a lot of education not only to the mother, but to the adoptive families. Other organizations, even dioceses, offer online education, but we spend a great deal of personal time with the families about adoption, which makes them more prepared.”
Titsworth encourages families or individuals who want to learn more about adoption to go to visit catholicsocialservice.org/services/adoption, or contact Titsworth at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or by phone at 620-792-1393. You can contact Amy Falcon at afalcon.catholicsocialservice.org, or (620) 227-1590.
For information on programs about relationships, go to catholicsocialservice.org/services/healthy-relationships, or contact Goodloe, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or call (620) 272-0010.

Past Issues

Feb. 24, 2019

Feb. 10, 2019

Jan. 27, 2019

Jan. 13, 2019

Dec. 23, 2018

Dec. 9, 2018

Nov. 25, 2018

Nov. 11, 2018

Oct. 28, 2018

Oct. 14, 2018

Sept. 16, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: 2018 Golf Classic; student athletes; physically challenged; Leonard Stegman; Lesson in forgiveness; Sending us on a mission

Sept. 2, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Priest crisis; Scandal; Opioid addictions; Seeds of Suicide; Leightons; St. Anne; Vincke; seminarians; Dominican Sisters; Stewardship Conference; Dead Sea Scrolls; PSR programs; Roe V. Wade

 

August 12, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Prayer and Action; Totus Tuus; Janee Bernal; Diana Ramirez; Heidy Ramirez; Bishop Gilmore honored for 20 years ministry; suicide; contraception and abortion; Dead Sea Scrolls; Humanae Vitae; certification in youth ministry; Chuck Weber; Cathedral rectory chapel; Sister Viola Heichelbech; Adam Urban

July 15, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Immigration Protest/Rally; Faith and Light Fiesta; Seeing the Dead Sea Scrolls; Corpus Christi procession; Prayers for priests; Sisters turn 100; Michael Brungardt; Gerald Vincke; Massacre in San Salvador; Action for Alex 

 

June 3, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Parish Pray for Priestly Vocations; Appeal reaches $10 million; Gangs; Seminarians; Pam Willis; Why I like being a priest; Happy Father's Day; Patricia Lujan; Tyler and Rachel Bennett; Adoption Protection Act.

May 20, 2018
KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Track meet; Beloved Sinners; Benjamin Martin retires; Smiles; Future of Fortune Telling; Hoisington mission; DofI; Getting Equipped; Spring Social; First Communion; Confirmation
KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Track meet; Beloved Sinners; Benjamin Martin retires; Smiles; Future of Fortune Telling; Hoisington mission; DofI; Getting Equipped; Spring Social; First Communion; Confirmation

May 6, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Archbishop Romero; Seeing, Touching, Tasting; Exhortation; Father Patrick Conroy; Happy Mother's Day; A child on your doorstep; Vibrant Ministries Grant; From the heart of a young father; Love Gives Life; Roman Holiday; Smartphone; retirement
Fossil Hunting

 

April 15, 2018

 KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Easter Vigil; Angelica Village; Colorado woman; The art of anger; Cimarron Couple; Staats; Adoption; 

Father Ultan Murphy anniversary; Coughlan; Spiritual Advisor to Hoodlums; Woman of Courage; Oration contest; Darcy Feist  

 

April 1, 2018

 

 KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Defending Adoption; Led by the Spirit; Knights; ABC Pregnancy Center;
Memorial of Mary; Homeless; Relics; Down syndrome abortion; Chrism Mass

 

March 18, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: SKYAC; Aleksandr Men; Fasting for Priestly Vocations; Uganda; School for deaf; Rannah Evetts; Oberle; Rachel and Doug Trombley; Oscar Romero; Paul VI; DACA

 

 

March 4, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Fasting for priestly vocations; Father Juan; Fasting and prayer;
Quest Weekend 2018; DACA; With God, anything is possible; Homelessness in our communities; Rhubarb, Kansas;
What's the point of fasting; Rite of Election; same-sex couples

 

Feb. 18, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Catholic Schools Week; Rachel Doll; Ellinwood; Great Bend; Garden City; Ness City; Dodge City; Sister Rita Schwarzenberger; Nigeria; Bishop Hermes; Fasting for Priestly Vocations; World Day for Consecrated Life; 50th Anniversary St. Dominic School; What will life be like in 50 years?

 

 

Feb. 4, 2018

 

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: March for Life; Tracy and Ross Smith; Adoption; Vibrant Ministries; Faith and Light;
Pro-Life; Mortal sin to discard elderly; DACA; Abortion; Dreamers; Human Trafficking

 

Jan. 21, 2018

 KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Louise Korbe; Anne Frank; Miep Gies; Home Heat; Father Solanus

 

Jan. 7, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Good news and kingdom living; dreamers; Sister Teresa Orozco; Infant Adoption; Elderly; a moral conundrum; seminarian; feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe

 

 

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