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SLU has returned to U.S. News and World Reports’ top 100 national universities. . .Mizzou today: officials from the Italian government and the university and a power company are combining research involving priceless Italian artifacts. . .Speakers this year at WashU Student Union are: Kevar Burton of “Star Trek” fame and Michelle Kwan, the Olympic figure skater.
Speaking of higher learning institutions, we’re now being inundated by ad campaigns from accredited universities as well as diploma mills. Think WGU University, U of Phoenix; St. Louis College of Health Careers; Missouri College; Capella. Turning to the 100 year-old and highly respected Central Institute for the Deaf, it now has upped its tuition to $27,000 a year and as little as $10 per month for those whose families cannot afford the big bucks.


the family of the late Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, N.Y., Cardinal Timothy Dolan refuses to release the remains of Sheen’s body from St. Patrick’s Cathedral. The archdiocese of Peoria, IL – Sheen’s hometown – wants to bury his remains in a tomb being constructed in its museum. The first American-born male who may reach sainthood, Sheen will also be honored by Peoria’s plan to build a campus in his name surrounding the museum and tomb.
“How the Catholic Church Masterminded the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby Debacle” is the title of an explosive article on the Salon blog. The story: “While evangelical Christians ultimately brought down the contraception mandate, they had big help from Catholics.” It continues about a Missouri father who’s looking to keep his daughters from access to birth control.


Susan Levinson with Harlan Levin at Show Stoppers

Susan Levinson with Harlan Levin at Show Stoppers

The St. Louis Show Stoppers musical revue at Clayton HIgh’s theater raised the roof to a rousing presentation of numbers from “Show Boat,” “Gypsy,” “The Pajama Game” and “Meet Me in St. Louis” – all to benefit the Siteman Cancer Center. Directed by Barbara Parker Helmer, the cast included: Vickie Horton; Debbie Burkemper; Mary Schwandt; Walter Schultz; Pepi Parshall; Mike Sander; Marvin Cohen; Ginny Weiss; Niki Newcomb; Barry McClintock; Herb Seidel; Ron Hollander; Margie Hermelin and Stefanie Kluba among others.

Show Stopper's Director Barbara Parker Helmer

Show Stopper’s Director Barbara Parker Helmer

Parker and Monica Burtis at Show Stoppers

Parker and Monica Burtis at Show Stoppers

Show Stopper's president Mike Sander and daughter, Leah Sander

Show Stopper’s president Mike Sander and daughter, Leah Sander


Onward a few blocks away at Giovanni’s Kitchen, a toast to the upcoming (Nov. 9) wedding of Jennifer Csengody to Zach Novetsky, Her parents and sis, Tom, Susan and Dana couldn’t have been more pleased. Nearby, Nancy and Dr. Robert Taxman enjoyed the good life with pals. Bob is a celebrated internist and coronary specialist.

Susan Tom and Dana Csengody at Giovanni's Kitchen

Susan Tom and Dana Csengody at Giovanni’s Kitchen

Dr. Bob and Nancy Taxman at Giovanni's Kitchen

Dr. Bob and Nancy Taxman at Giovanni’s Kitchen



The Ferguson beat goes on. Saturday’s news led in some media outlets with: the 5,000 (many Fergusonites) who attended the Urban League’s job fair; Dellwood unity parade and protests calling for the arrest of the police officer who shot Michael Brown. A viewer of this column shot off a missive to the Huffington Post: “The picture you posted on 9/13 shows Michael Brown with his hands up is fake! That photo shows Brown was wearing long pants and an orange shirt. He wore baggy pants when he was killed and there was no big truck beside him. Check out the pictures that show Brown stealing cigars a few minutes before he was shot – no long pants as shown in your picture.” On slow news days you can still see the press corps falling all over each other like a pack of beagles – noisily barking, sometimes at the fresh scent of a new lead, but often at the scent and sight of each other. Known for his work on social injustice, not even George Orwell might have been there to outdo the others.
Two attorneys will soon ask the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn the Missouri Supreme Court’s restrictive 1997 Drewer ruling, which protects institutions that are sued for child sex crimes by their employees. And they’re challenging a more recent decision in the Fr. James Tierney abuse case in which Catholic officials are seeking thousands of pages of records from SNAP about clergy sex abuse victims.
Ted (Theodore J.) Flicker died Friday at 84. He was producer, director and performer with the Compass Players in Gaslight Square. Then he was able to create the Crystal Palace Theater in 1959. He and Fran Landesman wrote the musical, “The Nervous Set,” which eventually became a Broadway and London hit. RIP.



The motion picture, “Gone Girl,” will have its first premiere Oct. 2 in Cape Girardeau’s Cape West 14 Cine (a Wehrenberg theater) – a day before its national release. Part of the movie was filmed in that city and stars Ben Affleck, Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler Perry and Carrie Coon.


Five prelates have joint-authored a book defending the Catholic church doctrine about divorced and remarried Catholics. Among them is Cardinal Raymond Burke, formerly head of the archdiocese here. The book is considered a rebuke of German Cardinal Walter Kasper’s widely-welcomed recent call for the church to relax restrictions on divorced and remarried parishioners receiving communion.


Bill Maher bowed his 12th season last night of his HBO show, “Real Time,” from D.C.: “Mitt Romney, we think he’s going to run again. This time, this time, things would turn out differently. He’d get his ass kicked – by a woman.”


AT&T is eyeing late 2015 to launch a DirectTV, high-speed, wireless
broadband bundle. It will deliver speeds of 50 megabits per second.


The U.S. Dept. of Transportation is releasing a TIGER grant of $10.3
million for the construction of a new light rail transit station on
MetroLink at Boyle Avenue and Sarah Street in the CWE. The money will
also underwrite a bike trail connecting the new Cortex station to the
Regional Great Rivers Greenway.


Our town’s Fr. Msgr. Jack Schuler of Metropolitan Congregations United and Bishop Edward Rice of the archdiocese are featured in the National Catholic Reporter in a story about how clergy are helping North County citizens deal with the Ferguson crisis. Then there’s Nicholas Kristoff of the N.Y. Times offering grim statistics about its underlying causes. He writes, “The net worth of the average black household in the U.S. is now $6,314, compared with $110,500 for the average white household and the gap worsened in the last decade. The United States now has a greater wealth gap by race than South Africa did during the Apartheid”. . .The 175th founding of Mizzou next week: Dame Jane Goodall, famed anthropologist/primatologist, will speak there on Thursday at the Mizzou Arena. Among the memories sure to be mentioned: Mark Twain, who received an honorary doctorate in 1902. His classic Huck Finn gets a long, thought provoking piece by A. O. Scott in the upcoming Sunday edition of the N.Y. Times mag called, “The Death of Adulthood in American Culture.” Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin and wife, Karin, will be toasted at a reception. . .Greenville College prof Matt Zahniser speaks Oct. 23 at Litzsinger School in Clayton on the widely-praised federal Wilderness Act, which LBJ signed into law 50 years ago this month. Zahniser’s dad co-authored the historic legislation.

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