By Anne Marie Amacher
The Catholic Messenger
Integrating and improving the relationship between clergy and physicians was among topics of great interest to the president of the Quad-City area St. Thomas Guild who attended a Catholic Medical Association meeting last month in Illinois.
Dr. Timothy Millea, the guild’s president and a member of St. Paul the Apostle Parish in Davenport, attended the meeting at Mundelein Seminary in Mundelein, Ill., with Dr. Michal Porubcin, vice president, and Father Charles Klamut, Illinois guild chaplain. Other topics covered at the event included communications, lobbying, and state director updates.
Millea said it was open to members of the Catholic Medical Association and its guilds. There were between 60-70 people in attendance. The annual meeting, which will be held in Washington, D.C., later this fall, draws more people.
The Holy Alliance session has led Millea to a new goal. He said the session was on integrating and improving the relationship between clergy and physicians.
The goal, Millea said, is to give clergy resources and provide data in laymen’s terms. “My goal is to put information in a binder or on pdf and get it to all clergy in the state.”
According to the Catholic Medical Association website, the Holy Alliance is using faith and reason regarding today’s controversial moral issues and the need to unite the two worlds.
Millea said priests will have information about various issues and physicians will be able to help them “speak to their flocks.”
Some topics that may be addressed include NaPro Technology/Infertility, risks of prenatal genetic tests, neuroscience of pornography, advanced directives/POLST, Catholic living wills and the morning after pill.
“This is a pet project of mine and I’m going to get this going.”
Millea said Lobbying 101 was led by Dr. James Becker, president of the Des Moines guild. The topic covered lobbying at the state and national levels. Becker talked about being involved, being “active in the trenches with elective officials” and consciences protection.
Social media was another topic presented. One presentation Millea attended last summer dealt with social media presence. “I went home and said no way. One week later we had our Twitter and Facebook pages up.” Millea’s son Mike posted on June 18, 2015, that “My dad just signed up on Twitter and Facebook. Listen closely. That’s hell freezing over you hear.”
Twitter and Facebook are used frequently and a new website has also been set up by the son of vice president Dr. Michael Porubcin. View it at http://stthomasaquinasguildqc.com/. Millea is excited to have social media up and running.
In the state director’s meeting, members talked about finding qualified physicians and specialists who could testify in Iowa when a topic relevant to Catholics and medicine comes up. Since it would likely be short notice that someone would be needed in Des Moines, the speaker would probably be someone who is retired or semi-retired.
Millea said the Quad City guild is making good statewide connections with organizations such as the Iowa Catholic Conference, Knights of Columbus and Right to Life groups. “We want to connect with interested Catholics.” He said those Catholics may or may not be in the medical field.