Familiar faces from 2003

The following are excerpts from personality profiles that appeared in The Catholic Miscellany during 2003.

In January, Father Edmund McCaffrey, Ph.D., retired as pastor of Holy Family Church in Hilton Head. He had been a Benedictine monk, a political science professor who founded and headed the Political Science Department at Belmont Abbey College, a visiting professor, writer, Abbot ordinary of the Belmont Abbey monastery and pastor.

Cathy Cleaver, director of planning and information for the U.S. bishops’ Secretariat for Pro-Life Activities, visited the College of Charleston. She said the 30 years of legal abortion in the United States and the more than 40 million abortions since 1973 are not a measure of society’s success in meeting the needs of women, but of its failure.

As their religious order prepared to celebrate its 125th anniversary, though looking to an uncertain future, Franciscan Sister Helen Chatterton of St. Peter Church in Columbia and Franciscan Sister Colleen Waterman of Our Lady of Mercy in Charleston were the only two members of the Sisters of the Third Order Regular of St. Francis of the Congregation of Our Lady of Lourdes in South Carolina.

One year after his ordination to the priesthood, Father Lee Selzer found that his aspirations about the priestly life have been  exceeded, saying, “It has been all that was promised by the Vocations Office.” He is the parochial vicar of St. Joseph Church in Columbia.

It would probably take two people to live the active life of high school senior Daniel Hudacko, a parishioner of Our Lady of the Hills Church in Columbia. He is a star football player for Irmo High School’s varsity team (chosen to play in the Shrine Bowl as a state all-star player), co-produces the school’s live broadcast news show called “Silver Screen,” and also leads weekly Bible study classes at the church.

At 4 foot 11 inches (and three quarters), Carrie Graves stands out in a crowd. She is distinctive because this diminutive cadet is a student at The Citadel and an active Catholic. But this unusually confident 19-year-old who is finishing her sophomore year has what it takes. She has God.

Thank goodness for the call of the Lord! Otherwise, Msgr. Robert J. Kelly might be an inductee in the Baseball Hall of Fame rather than someone celebrating 50 years in the priesthood. The much-loved pastor of Our Lady of Good Counsel on Folly Beach and chaplain of Bishop England High School celebrated his golden jubilee May 14.

George Williams’ father wanted his son to be a Baptist preacher. Williams, on the other hand, aspired to a career in law. God must have had other plans, however, because he went on to become the first black principal in Horry County and an active parishioner at St. James in Conway. He has served on the board of Horry-Georgetown Technical College and the school board for the Diocese of Charleston. The president of Coastal Carolina University recruited him to serve as director of minority students, and former Gov. Jim Hodges asked him to serve on the university’s board.

Father Robert Fix celebrated his fiftieth year as a Catholic priest, with the last 30 years spent as a priest for the Charleston diocese and the previous 20 spent serving the Croisier religious community.

For someone only a nod away from the pinnacle in the realm of national politics, working in Greenville would seem a step in the opposite direction. Not for David Tiede Hottinger. Hottinger is an assistant to the pastor at St. Mary Church, and he covered a lot of ground to get there.

Ernest Lion, a  survivor of the Holocaust, decided to become a Catholic. It’s a decision his pastor, Msgr. Thomas Duffy, helped him make, with healing assistance from the St. Michael Church adoration room. Lion doesn’t like to talk about his past, but he has written his story. It’s  a story that makes one ashamed to complain about the everyday travails of one’s life.

Habitat for Humanity is a ministry that works because of people like Greg Thomas. He is the construction supervisor for the East Cooper chapter of Habitat, and people of all ages volunteer to build houses with him.

Father Howard L. “Bud” Coughlin, pastor emeritus of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton parish in Mauldin, celebrated the 50th anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood on Aug. 22. The former Trappist priest was feted by hundreds of the parishioners he served for the past 20 years at a Mass and dinner.

The parties may be over for now, but the celebration continues for Father Jerry Aylward. The 81-year-old Paulist priest celebrated his jubilee year in the priesthood with parties and remembrances at four parishes — St. Andrew, St. Paul the Apostle, St. Francis Mission and Holy Cross.

Published Jan. 1, 2004
The Catholic Miscellany