For the entire bulletin with pictures please click the following link.

Sunday, May 31, 2009<——- Click here for the Full Color


Pastor’s Corner . . .   “The audience assembled on Sunday morning last”  [May 30, 1886] “at 10 o’clock in the new Catholic church of Stamford, was limited only by the capacity of the building, which spacious as it is, could not contain all who sought admission within its walls. While hundreds more stood outside, not less than twenty-five hundred people, obtained entrance, and witnessed the impressive ceremonial of dedication by the Rt. Rev. Bishop McMahon and the priests chosen as his assistants for the occasion.” Thus did the Stamford Advocate begin its report of the dedication ceremonies of our church, adding, “The new church is undoubtedly one of the very finest ecclesiastical edifices in the state.” [The Stamford Advocate, June 1, 1886]


All in all, Stamford was quite impressed: Saint John’s was the largest church in the state, and the ceremonies were attended by nearly the entire 4,000 person Catholic population of the city, with 25 priests and the Bishop of Hartford, and 24 other assistants and seminarians in attendance. Nowhere in Yankee Connecticut had there been such an expression of the rapid growth of the Church as on May 30, 1886 in Stamford, an up-and-coming city in southwestern Fairfield County.  The preacher for the day was Father Ignatius Horstmann, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, who reminded those assembled of the pace of Catholic growth in town: “What a change forty years have brought about in the Catholic Church here in Stamford. The progress of Catholicity in your midst can be read from these facts: from the Mass offered up in private houses to the modest frame chapel on Meadow Street, that was twice enlarged and improved, then to this magnificent structure worthy to be called a cathedral. At first a few faithful, now one-third of the entire population of the town.” [The Connecticut Catholic, June 5, 1886]


But the construction of our great church was not an easy project, and seemed doomed to permanent incompletion because of lack of funding, until the arrival of an Irish immigrant via Chicago—John Ennis, one of the most interesting men in the history of our city. Born in Richmond Harbor, County Longford, Ireland in 1842, he and his family moved to Chicago. Ennis fought for the Union in the Civil War. He worked as a contractor and built a number of churches in Chicago following the great fire. He and his family moved to Stamford, and became members of Saint John’s, and one of the most interesting persons in town. He fought to protect the rights of Irish Catholics, established a spa and hotel on Shippan Point, and gained fame as a world class athlete, capturing awards as a swimmer, crack rifleman, boxer, ice skater and long distance walker. He held the world record for both the 100-mile speed ice skating  [he was 52 years old at the time!] and walking across the United States [50 days and 5 hours at the age of 68 years!!].


Our interest with Mr. Ennis concerns the building of our present church. After the exterior of the church was basically completed according to the plans of James Murphy, construction stopped, due to lack of funds, and the building  closed in with a flat roof. In 1882 Ennis gave an estimate and plan for completing the interior work of the church, which was accepted by the pastor, Father William Rogers.


The former pastor, Father Michael Tierney, had decided to lower the roof trusses by seven feet, to cut costs. And James Murphy refused to continue with his original designs, and suggested leaving the church with a flat roof. But Ennis came forward with another plan: cut and restore the necessary seven feet of space by cutting and rebuilding the roof trusses. Murphy refused, claiming the building would collapse. Father Rogers was convinced by Ennis, and work began anew to provide for the Gothic plan of the church. Ennis later described his efforts at Saint John’s: “I had sole control of the construction of all the mechanical work, both as architect and general contractor and for four years I gave the work the best that was in me as a skilled mechanic and builder. They were the  happiest years of my life: my heart as well as my head and all the physical energy I possessed was employed for a good purpose and a successful end. I remodeled the interior as follows: Restored seven feet of space in order to make a true Gothic ceiling; enlarged the pillars more than twice the diameter of the original plans; substituted circular stairs to the galleries, three flights, instead of plain box stairs, as planned by old drawings. The roof did not collapse as predicted, no one was killed or injured. . .” He described Saint John’s as “the most beautiful Gothic church building in the State of Connecticut”, and continued, “Every line and detail is mine.” One of his last gifts to Saint John’s was the stained glass window in memory of his beloved wife Mary, who died in 1892 [the third northern window, to the left of the baptismal font]. John Ennis died in 1929 of pneumonia at 78 years of age.


So, Happy Anniversary, St. John’s!  Let’s remember John and his wife Mary Ennis in a little prayer today, as well as all our fellow Catholics of those earlier days, whose faith, generosity and determination created this beautiful church as a sign of their Catholic faith, and as a gift to future generations who would join them in worshiping God at this altar.–Mons. DiGiovanni


Please pray for the sick… Anthony P. D’Ariano, Matthew Kenealy, Millie Demillo, Anthony & Mary Ellen Sansone, Mons. John Horgan-Kung, Mike McNamee, Paul Rittman, Sal Sciazza, Ed Koplos, John Castellano, Lily Rice, Marion Giordano, Ray Flaharty


Please pray for those who have recently died  Monika LoBaidi, Sheila Kilcoyne, Mary Daly, Brazilia Walker, Joseph Barrone, Evelyn Bauman, Phil DeFelice Sr., Alice Banning, Paul Eldridge, Antoinetta Fiore, Marie Corcoran, Eugene Rizzi, Denis O’Neil.


St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies … Our next study group will begin on June 3rd to begin studying the acts of the ancient Church martyrs.


The Latin Reading Group… Is translating St. Augustine’s Confessions…And meets every Wednesday in the rectory at 6:15 p.m.   High School Latin is all that’s needed.  Just walk in.  Next meting will be on June 3rd.


Introduction to Ecclesiastical Latin. . .will begin on Wednesday, June 3rd at 6 p.m. in the Rectory, and meet every Wednesday evening. All are welcome; just come in the front door.


Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Will  meet  June 4th  at 7:30 p.m. in the rectory. 


Parish Women’s Society Meets every Saturday at 9:30 a.m. in the Rectory for prayer, refreshments and conversation.  All are welcome; please, join us:  just walk in the first front door. 


Moms & Tots … A group of moms and their children meet with Fr. Walsh each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30 a.m. in church for Eucharistic adoration, followed by snacks in the rectory.  Please join us.   Our next meeting will be on Tuesday June 2nd.  


20’s & 30’s Group 20’s and 30’s Annual Picnic will be held on Monday, June 8th.  We will pray the Rosary in  Church from 6:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. followed by a cookout in the Backyard. Bring a friend…Give us a call so we can plan for food: 324-1553, ext. 21.


Birthright needs volunteers to help with mothers.  Volunteers provide pregnancy tests, listen to client concerns and connect women with needed resources. Schedules are flexible. Please call (203) 348-4355 or for more info.


Want to be a Lector at Mass? We are in need of lectors for the Saturday 4:00 p.m. and Sunday 12:00 noon Masses.  If interested, please contact Mary Bridget Gaine: (203) 978-0249 or


Annual Bishop’s Appeal. . . The parish goal this year is $85,000.  Please consider making a donation to help our Bishop:  This weekend, 30/31, we will have the In-Pew opportunity to  make a donation.  Please be generous.

Sponsor Certificates for Baptism or Confirmationare happily given to parishioners of St. John’s, i.e.  those who are registered members; who regularly attend Sunday Mass; who lead a virtuous life worthy of imitation by those whom they will sponsor in Baptism or Confirmation.

HELP FEED THE HUNGRY IN OUR COMMUNITY – Fairfield County Eats! – a tasting event to benefit The Food Bank of Lower Fairfield County will take place on Thursday, June 18th at The Hilton Stamford Hotel & Executive Meeting Center from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.  Over 48 Restaurants, Caterers, and Beverage Providers will be offering their best selections.  The Food Bank is the area’s primary hunger-relief organization and provides food to about 100 agencies and programs.  Tickets are $50.00.  For more information or to buy tickets on line at (203) 921-1879.

  Sunday May 24, 2009   $ 9,879.34

 Sunday May 25, 2008   $10,919.50


I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

 June 7th  Sunday Readings:   Dt. 4:32-34, 39-40; Rom.8:14-17; Mt: 28:16-20

 Banns of Marriage:  1st:    Dardell Thomas Ingram & Elissa Fabrizio

                                       1st:    Michel Cayo & Evelyn Alabre

                                       2nd:  Scott Tyler O’Donnell & Natasha Anne Austin

                                       3rd:   Shawn Ricardo Denir Burroughs & Nichole Antoinette Allen

 Hymns for this weekend . . . (1) Come, Holy Ghost [Missalette]  (2) 92. The Creed for the Noon Mass may be found in the hymnal at No. 289.

 Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass…Mass Ordinary: Masa for Four Voices – William Byrd, 1540-1623.  Offertory Motet: Loquebantur variis linguis – G.P. da Palestrina –  1525-1594 (The apostles spoke in many tongues, alleluia, of the great works of God, alleluia. They were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak in many tongues of the great works of God, alleluia. Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit. Alleluia.)

Communion Motet: Veni Creator Spiritus – L. Abbott (Come, Holy Spirit, Creator blest, and in our souls take up Thy rest; come with Thy grace and heavenly aid to fill the hearts which Thou hast made. Kindle our sense from above, and make our hearts o’erflow with love; with patience firm and virtue high the weakness of our flesh supply. [attrib. Rabanus Maurus])

The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Spiritus Dominus (The Spirit of the Lord has filled the whole world, alleluia; and that which contains all things, knows every language spoken by men, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia; Let God arise, and let his enemies be scattered; and let those who hate him flee before his face. [Wisdom 1:7; Ps. 67]); Alleluia Veni Sancte Spiritus (Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful people, and enkindle in them the fire of your love.); Sequence Veni Sancte Spiritus (Come, Thou Holy Spirit, come; And from Thy celestial home Shed a ray of light Divine: Come, Thou Father of the poor, Come, Thou source of all our store, Come, within our bosoms shine: Thou of comforters the best, Thou the soul’s most welcome guest, Sweet refreshment here below; In our labor rest most sweet, Grateful coolness in the heat, Solace in the midst of woe; O most blessed Light Divine, Shine within these hearts of Thine, And our inmost beings fill; Where Thou art not, man hath naught, Nothing good in deed or thought, Nothing free from taint of ill. Heal our wounds; our strength renew; On our dryness pour Thy dew; Wash the stains of guilt away: Bend the stubborn heart and will; Melt the frozen, warm the chill; Guide the steps that go astray. On the faithful, who adore And confess Thee, evermore In Thy seven-fold gifts descend: Give them virtue’s sure reward, Give them Thy salvation, Lord, Give them joys that never end. Amen, alleluia.); Offertory Confirma hoc Deus (Confirm, O God, that which you have accomplished in our midst; from your holy temple which is in Jerusalem, kings shall offer presents to you, alleluia. [Ps. 67:29-30]); Communion Factus est repente (Suddenly, a sound came from heaven like a rush of a mighty wind, in the place where they were sitting, alleluia; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and announced the great God had done, alleluia, alleluia. [Acts 2:2,4]).

 Calling all Singers! . . . The 10:00 a.m. Family Mass Adult choir is in need of singers! We rehearse at 8:15 a.m. on Sundays only, in the Choir Room. Are you regularly attending the 10:00 a.m. Mass and would you consider lending your voice to our choir? Please call Scott Turkington for more information: 203-324-1553, ext. 18.

  Mass Intentions

 Saturday, May 30

  4:00    Brian & Kathleen Fennessey

Sunday, May 31

  7:30   +Richard Adam req. Therese & Nicholas Troilo

10:00   Special Intention Maiah Rovegno

12:00 +Anniello Preziosi 43rd Anniversary req. Children, Grandchildren & Great Grandchildren

6:00 +Francis M. Carriera, wife req. Gerard Carriera

Monday, June 1

  8:00 +Patrick Kane & Family req. Estate of Catherine Kane & Family

12:10 +William E. Thomson req. Estate of William E. Thomson

Tuesday, June 2

  8:00 +Mary Lou DeLuca 1st Anniversary req. Msgr. DiGiovanni

12:10 +Antonio D’Amico req. his son Frank

Wednesday, June 3

  8:00 +Margaret M. Timon req. Thomas A. Timon

12:10 +Mr. Octavius & Venilia Mehu & Family by Grandchildren

Thursday, June 4

  8:00 +Gertrude Thielking req. Paul Murphy

 12:10 +Patrick & Vera Dandry req. John & Laura Pascale

Friday, June 5

  8:00 +Virginia & Eileen Carr req. Marie Carr

 12:10 Special Intention Msgr. DiGiovanni req. Millie Terenzio

Saturday, June 6

  8:00 +Hope & Joseph McAleer req. McAleer Family

12:10   Anne McEntee req. Kristen Cassidy

 Eucharistic Adoration:  Fridays, 8:30 a.m. – 12:00 noon.

 Holy Name Society For all men of the parish: The rectory every Friday morning for coffee, Eucharistic adoration benediction & prayer, from 7:00 – 8:00 a.m.

 Pray for an end to abortion every Wednesday 7:00 -10:30 a.m., Planned Parenthood, 1039 East Main St, Stamford.

 Are you a registered parishioner? If not, please visit the parish office Monday – Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. or call the office for more information [ext 21 or 17] or Register On-Line at our Website: 

Credit Card Offertory…Make weekly or monthly donations by credit card. You can set up recurring credit card donations with the church secretary.  She can take your information over the telephone.  Call (203) 324-1553 x 21.


St. John’s in The News . . .

   . . . 50 years ago, or so:


June 5, 1964:  Scout Troop Of St. John’s Presents Awards. “Boy Scout Troop 22, sponsored by St. John’s Catholic Church, held its annual Parents Night and Court of Honor. Scouts recognized for having advanced in rank during the past year were: Life – John Connolly. Star – Robert Gaynor, Robert Johnson, Daniel Moriarty, Patrick Moriarty, James Otis, and Daniel Shaub. First Class – Robert Costello and Arthur Remy. Second Class – William Boffa, Michael Connole, Gerald Costello, Terance Costello, Vincent Fanning, Noel Hanrahan, Douglas Harry, Brian Healy, Donald Hickey, Fred Jones, Richard Johnson, Ronald Lewis, Harry Lockwood, Thomas Lynam, Lawrence Lynch, Donald Memale, Steven Rank, Charles Russo, Mark Sileo, and William Thompson. Scouts inducted into the troop as Tenderfoot: Mark Brideau, Roger Cornwell, Thomas Falzone, Arthur Gleason, Mark McAuliffe, Dennis Moriarty, Henry Olmino, Mark Oricchio, Andres Purcell, Brian Quinn, Robert Terenzio, Jospeh Ventre, and Philip Waterbury.”


June 5, 1964:  Girl Scouts Conduct Joint Court Of Awards. “Girl Scout Troops 74 and 645 held a joint Court of Awards Tuesday, in the St. John’s School auditorium. Junior Scouts from Troop 74 earned merit badges: Cook, Bridget Ormond, Diedre Costello, Mary Orrichhio, Judy Cornwell, Patricia Kennedy, Andrea Martinelli, Julianne Breunich, Rose Marie Fanning, Anita Bobersky, Charlotte Frank, Michele Leary, Patricia O’Malley, Patricia Foster, Lois Gugliotto, Mary Anne Hanson, Carol Martinelli. Irma Rizzo Rina Tozzoli, Jacqueline Romano, Cynthia Drosdeck, Jo Ann Robotti, Linda DiVasto, Elise Veremakis, Jennie Sileo, Mary Ellen Shaub, Barbara Baudisch, Isabelle Mancinelli, Diane Paul, Maureen Costello, Judy Talor, Connie Dyrak, Sheila Lyman, Cathy Phelan, Alice Remy, Mary Lou Ryan. Pet, Lois Gugliotto. Drawing and painting, Patricia Kennedy. Housekeeping, Jennie Sileo, Cathy Griswold, Cynthia Drosdeck, Patricia Griswold, Diane Hayes, Linda DiVasto. Songsters, Jennie Sileo, Mary Ellen Shaub, Cynthia Drosdeck, Barbara Baudisch, Diane Paul, Maureen Costello, Judy Talor, Cathy Griswold, Patricia Griswold, Linda DiVasto. Arts and rounds, Jo Ann Robotti. Back yard fun, Isabelle Mancinelli, Cynthia Drosdeck, Jo Ann Robotti, Elise Veremakis, Mary Ellen Shaub. Collector, Isabelle Mancinelli, Linda DiVasto, Jo Ann Robotti, Margaret Gallagher, Elise Veremakis, Judy Talor, Mary Ellen Shaub, Mary Lou Ryan. The Sign of the Arrow was earned by Jo Ann Robotti, Mary Ellen Shaub, Patricia Griswold, Cynthia Drosdeck, Cathy Griswold. Hiking badges were presented to the following Cadettes: Betty Jane Romano, Jean Kennedy, Remy, Mary Bethe Marcinkowski, Cathy Huehion, Denise Seabrooks, Cecelia Golino, Therese Bobersky and Nancy Hull. Chef, Susan Hayes. The following Cadettes received five year pins: Theresa Hogan, Margaret Black, Deborah Walker, Patricia Smith and Julianne Summerton.”


Mass Schedule

Saturday:          8:00 a.m., 12:10 p.m. & 4:00 p.m. (Vigil)

Sunday:            7:30 a.m.

                          10:00 a.m.  (Family Mass)

                          12 Noon  (Sung Mass)

                          6:00 p.m.  Haitian Mass

                          (French and Creole)

Monday through Friday:  8:00 a.m. & 12:10 p.m.

Holy Days of Obligation:

– Vigil Masses (evening before):  5:15 p.m.

– Holy Days:  8:00 a.m., 12:10 p.m. & 5:15 p.m.


Confessions: (English, Francais, Espanol, Italiano)

Monday – Friday, Sunday 30 minutes prior to each Mass

Saturday:  3:00 – 4:00 p.m.

Anytime by appointment



Parents must make arrangements for the date of Baptism, preferably before the birth of their child, by calling the office at 324-1553 ext 21.  Baptisms are usually performed Saturdays.


First Communion and Confirmation

For information on Religious Education , please call the office at 324-1553 ext. 21.   Confirmation is a two-year program.



Engaged couples who hoped to be married at St. John’s must contact one of the parish priests at least 6 months prior to their wedding.  Engaged couples who plan to have their wedding elsewhere, but would like to receive marriage preparation at St. John’s are likewise asked to contact one of the parish priests 6 months in advance.  Marriages are not performed on Sunday’s at St. John’s..  At least one member of the engaged couple will have been a regular and registered parishioner at St. John’s for at least six months, prior to requesting marriage preparation.


Sick Calls, First Friday Communion Calls, and the Anointing of the Sick

If you know someone who is seriously ill at home or in the hospital, or cannot come to Mass, please call the rectory (ext. 21).  One of the priests will be happy to bring Communion and administer the Sacrament of the Sick.



– Miraculous Medal Novena:  Monday at 8:20 a.m.

– Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament: Friday, following the 8:00 a.m. Mass until 12:00 p.m.


St John’s Bookstore Hours

Sunday:  10:45 a.m. – 12:00 noon  (Closed during Mass)

Thursday:  11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.  (Closed during Mass)


Pentecost and the Feast of the Visitation

                                                                  – Fr. Terry Walsh

“But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for such the Father seeks to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth”(John 4:23).


Jesus said, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he will give you another Counselor, to be with you for ever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him; you know him, for he dwells with you, and will be in you”(Jn 14:15). In other words, as faithful members of the Mystical Body of Christ, we are imbued with the Holy Spirit, who leads and guides all the Children of the Light into the Heavenly Kingdom. Our brief sojourn here on earth is our opportunity to follow  Christ: to love him and honor him. He helps us every step of the way. Through every trial, every suffering, every joy and every consolation we are strengthened by the seven-fold gift of the Holy Spirit so that we may accomplish our mission: as St. Paul put it: “To live the truth in love”(Ephesians4:15). 

The Blessed Virgin Mary, the Immaculate Conception, was created without the stain of sin, yet, she endured great suffering. She suffered in union with Her Son—for love of Him. She suffered for love of his Mystical Body, the Church. She was filled with the Holy Spirit, yet she suffered. Consider the wonder of the Annunciation—the most extraordinary moment in time. What immeasurable joy! Yet, this young “unmarried” woman endured false accusation. Like Her Son would do during His Passion, Mary ‘opened not her mouth’ to defend her innocence. Rather, she faithfully placed her trust in God and remained completely docile to the Holy Spirit. She Motherly Heart focused on the needs of others. After all, she was carrying the Messiah. Yet, she humbly journeyed over the hill country to visit Elizabeth, who was preparing for the birth of John the Baptist. Mary is our model of purity, humility, love – indeed, every virtue. Now our Heavenly Mother visits each one of us in the very same way. She comes to us tenderly to lead us into the Heart of Her Son.

In True Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, St. Louis De Montfort writes: “When Mary has taken root in a soul she produces in it wonders of grace which only she can produce; for she alone is the fruitful virgin who never had and never will have her equal in purity and fruitfulness….When the Holy Spirit, her spouse, finds Mary in a soul, he hastens there and enters fully into it. He gives himself generously to that soul according to the place it has given to his spouse”(n.35,36). When we examine our prayer life, what place have we given to our Spiritual Mother? Are we truly devoted children? She loves each one of Her children with a perfect love. She is our great Intercessor, always seeking to lead us into a deeper union with Her Son. Though our devotion to her, we imitate Christ and at the same time honor the 4th commandment.  And as our devotion deepens, the Holy Spirit will pour abundant graces into our souls, forming us more perfectly in love. DeMontfort put it this way: “…the more the Holy Spirit finds Mary, his dear and inseparable spouse, in a soul the more powerful and effective he becomes in producing Jesus Christ in that soul and that soul in Jesus Christ”(n.20). Each time we utter the “Angelic Salutation” better known as the “Hail Mary” we call upon her motherly aid and she rushes to our side. How beautiful to contemplate the Mysteries of Jesus through the Hands of Mary, the pedals of the Rosary. Consider the origin of the Hail Mary: it begins with the Salutation of the Archangel Gabriel, sent from God, to greet  the Virgin Mary: “Hail, Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you!” Soon after, Mary visits Elizabeth. Upon her greeting, Elizabeth, inspired by the Holy Spirit, cries out to Mary, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.  And finally, the spiritual children of Mary, that is, the Church, completes the prayer: “Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.” De Montfort reminds us that the salvation of the world began with this prayer at the Annunciation.. He writes: “The ‘Hail Mary’…brought to a dry and barren world the Fruit of Life…the Hail Mary is a heavenly dew which waters the earth of our soul and makes it bear its fruit in due season….When the Hail Mary is well said, that is, with attention, devotion and humility, it is, according to the saints, the enemy of Satan, putting him to flight; it is the hammer that crushes him, a source of holiness for souls, a joy to the angels and a sweet melody for the devout. It is the Canticle of the New Testament, a delight for Mary and glory for the most Blessed Trinity. The Hail Mary is dew falling from heaven to make the soul fruitful. It is a pure kiss of love we give to Mary. It is a crimson rose, a precious pearl that we offer to her”(253).”

Citing the Church Fathers, the great Saints of the early Church, DeMontfort clarifies the extraordinary role of Mary in the life of the Church –in every member of the Mystical Body of Her Son: “God the Holy Spirit entrusted his wondrous gifts to Mary, his faithful spouse, and chose her as the dispenser of all he possesses, so that she distributes all his gifts and graces to whom she wills, as much as she wills, how she wills and when she wills. No heavenly gift is given to men which does not pass through her virginal hands”(n.25).