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The RoundTable

Fall 2009

Everyday Prophets

Major Articles

  • Love in Abundance: The Witness of Ann Manganaro – Ellen Rehg
  • Insufficient Submissiveness and Infinite Compassion: Lorenzo Rosebaugh - Carolyn Griffeth
  • Inspired by Faith: Rachel Rogers - Teka Childress
  • Gifts of Love: Chuck Trapkus - Steve Woodward
  • Follow the Children: Tim Pekarek - Annjie Schiefelbein
  • Catholic Worker Lifestyle Across a Lifetime: Roberta Thurstin-Timmerman & Don Timmerman -Roberta Thurstin-Timmerman
  • Daily Decisions and Living the Gospel: Ruth Heaney - Jenny Truax
  • Love is the Measure: Teka Childress - Annjie Schiefelbein

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Regular Features

  • Front cover: Gen Cassani, SSND

  • Centerfold: Our Everyday Prophets - James Meinert

  • Why This Issue – Megan Heeney

  • From Karen House – TC Parsons

  • From Little House - Mike Baldwin

  • Catholic Worker Thought and Action -Colleen Kelly


Why This Issue

One of our community members at Karen House teaches at a local Catholic high school. She instructs first year students in Old Testament Theology. My favorite part of her semester is when she is lesson planning for her section on “Prophets”. We always seem to perk our ears when she tells stories about her students naming people who may or may not be prophets. She invites the students to discuss what makes these people prophetic and to write about them. The textbook the students read tells them that there are some disti ncti ve signs that demonstrate that people are prophets: prophets speak truth to power, the lifestyle of a prophet is not glamorous, and prophets are often unpopular in their times. 


The Roundtable is delighted to be discussing everyday prophets, because so often prophets are seen as role models only in retrospect. Many people who have been involved in different Catholic Worker houses have considered themselves blessed to know modern prophets. We have been lucky to know people who have spent their lives speaking truth to power, living in full accordance with their values. These people have been less than popular due to the ways their lives challenge others. It is these prophetic people who remind us daily what it means to try to be good and to love fully. 


This May we lost a beloved prophet, Lorenzo Rosebaugh. Lorenzo showed us how to love - his desire to love the poor and the outcast led him to Brazil, Guatemala and Catholic Worker Houses in the United States. Carolyn writes about this “bright light” for justice that the world has lost, and about how his love carries on. Jenny shares the life of Ruth Heaney with us, a woman whose life was filled with many roles. In every one of them, she kept struggling for justice, never hardening her heart. Steve from Silk Hope Catholic Worker tells us about one of his closest friends Chuck Trapkus, whose beautiful joyful simplicity is truly missed. Ellen tells us about Ann Manganaro’s journey, describing her as “full of desire to do good, to do God’s will.” We hear from Annjie about Teka Childress and her life that shows all who enter Karen House that love is truly the measure. Roberta Thurstin-Timmerman and Don Timmerman share their life adventure and thirst for justice with us. Annjie shares from her experiences living in community with Tim Pekarek over the last seventeen years. Tim’s humble, holy and good life has been a witness to so many here in St. Louis. Teka shares stories about Rachel Rogers, a faith-filled mother and prophet. We also hear from Colleen in the Catholic Worker Thought and Action column, TC gives an update from Karen House and Mike Baldwin shares his story from Little House. 


Many of the writers in this issue have a deep love and respect for the prophets about whom they wrote. These prophetic people have been the role models whom we hope to emulate. It is this love that envelops this Roundtable issue. We hope these witnesses encourage us all in speaking truth to power, living in full accordance with our values and not fearing criticism.


- Megan Heeney



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