For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday August 30, 2009
Pastor’s Corner. . . Continuing our walking tour of the church, we are now at the crossing of the main aisle and transepts. The space seems immense, with the side walls opening to form the crossing, moving beyond the 68 foot width of the nave down which we’ve just walked, to measure 92 feet across, from the Bell Street side wall to rectory side wall. The height at the crossing is 50 feet, directly beneath the central round ceiling boss, with IHS [the first Greek three letters of Jesus] and plaster ornamentation of gilded acanthus fronds and shamrocks.
Let’s look at the northern transept windows [on your right as you face the altar]. The Lower windows date from the dedication of the church in 1886. There are nine lovely windows in groupings of three, formed of simple geometric designs, bold colors, and slight grisse foliage patterned borders, and crowned with stars of geometric shaped glass. Each trio is crowned by a stained glass rose window composed of sculpted geometric patterns of heavy Victorian bullet glass. The two side roses have simple stars in their centers; the central rose window has a Sacred Heart of Jesus, surrounded by a Crown of Thorns, suggestive of the larger window of the transept.
The masterpiece of each transept is the large upper window. Dominating the northern and southern transept walls, each is a modern replacement for the 1886 originals, which, like those in the lower course of windows, were simple designs of Victorian glass. The present windows date from 1926, and were commissioned by Father James O’Brien from the DaPrato Studio of Chicago, for a total cost of $5,940.00. These were recently restored, with new steel reinforced mahogany window frames, at a cost of $150,000. Prices have gone up since 1926!
The southern window is of Christ healing the Sick. Our Lord stands in the center, blessing an infirmed child, carried by her mother. Impoverished cripples and lepers approach from the left, a young man is carried from behind, and a husband points to his suffering wife, as he calls for Our Lord’s attention. Those who are ill are clothed in muted colors, in sharp contrast to Jesus’ brilliant red robes and shinning halo, suggesting Himself as the source of all life and vitality. The motto below the window, “And there came to Him great multitudes and He healed them” [Mt 15:30], narrates exactly that the Creator of the universe returns in human flesh to destroy the power of evil, embodied here in illness, and to restore all things to the Father in Himself, the Redeemer. The scene is framed by gothic architectural designs, bright floral decorations and a whimsical cityscape of Jerusalem in the background.
Above Our Lord is a window with His Sacred Heart, encircled by the Crown of Thorns, symbols of the depth of His Incarnate love for mankind, illustrated below as He comes to the aid of the sick and needy. On either side is an angel, each bearing a censer offering incense to Him who is both God and Man, and at the very top is a third angel, bearing the motto, “Have Mercy on Us.” On each side of the topmost angel are two further symbols telling us that He who is pictured below is Jesus [IHS, the three Greek letters of His Holy Name] who is the Christ [XP, the first two Greek letters of the title, Christ], the anointed of God, the savior.
All these windows form part of one of the largest collections of Victorian and early 20th century American ecclesiastical stained glass in the area. Since so much was lost following the Second World War, when the craze among ecclesiastical architects, priests and designers was to simply get rid of all that was “old”, our windows are a real treasure in southwestern Connecticut, of which we should be proud and grateful.—Mons. Stephen DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick… John Castellano, Janet Rodgers, Yvonne Saint Preuve, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rose Lauture, Paul Rittman, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans, Jesus Cala, William Morris, Margaret Romaine, Annette Mellace, Charla Nash, Ruth Alexander

Please pray for those who have recently died…Louis Michael Ceretta, John DiNero, Paul Lorusso, Martinez Boursiquot, Karl Gandt, Tesse Kerelits, Jenny Danchaster, Leynor P. Iballa, Claire Gormley Collier, Michael William Greaney, Solange Exumer, Rose Leonowitz, Monika LoBaidi, Sheila Kilcoyne, Mary Daly, Brazilia Walker, Joseph Barrone, Evelyn Bauman

Air Conditioning Collection . . . The second collection today will be the Air Conditioning collection for the parish. Your generosity is appreciated.

Web Mass. . . You can now watch Saint John’s daily and Sunday Masses on-line: hook up to the parish website, which is www.stjohnsstamford.com; at the end of the first paragraph on the homepage is a line that says click here: watch Mass and enjoy the homilies and beautiful organ and choral music.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies … Will next meet on Wednesday, September 2nd, at 7:30 p.m. in the Rectory to study the 4th century Ecclesiastical History by Eusebius of Caesarea.

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.

Introduction to Ecclesiastical Latin . . . Meets every Wednesdays at 6:00 p.m. in the Rectory. All are welcome; just come in the front door. This is the most basic beginner course.

Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets every Tuesday evening at 7:30 p.m. in the rectory. Class is closed to new students.

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 September 1st.

Religious Education: All those entering our program this September for the first time must provide Baptism records which may be obtained from the Church where the child was baptized. This is a mandatory requirement for participation in Religious Education. The First Class will be SEPTEMBER 27, 2009. Registration and payment can be done on the parish website, stjohnsstamford.com.

Parish Picnic. . . Please mark your calendars: Will be at Cove Island on Sunday, September 20th: Food, beverages, games for kids of all ages: please plan to attend this great fun parish event.

Coffee Hour…Volunteers are needed to help with snacks, set up and/or serving for coffee hour after the 10:00 a.m. Mass.  For more information, please contact Janet Lancaster at 203-637-3301 or email her at jmlancaster@optonline.net.

Thefts in Church. . . Please do not leave valuables in the pews, especially when you go to Communion or to light a candle. While the vast majority of parishioners and visitors are honest, there are a few who are not, and we have had a few incidents lately that prove that.

Sunday August 23, 2009 $ 12,780.19

Sunday August 24, 2008 $ 11,290.16
“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

September 6th Sunday Readings: Is 35:4-7a; Jas 2:1-5; Mk 7:31-37.

Hymns for this weekend . . . (1) 183  (2) 165 (Tune: Regent Square). The Creed for the Noon Mass may be found in the hymnal at No. 289.

Noon Mass . . . As all popes since Pius X (1903-14) have exhorted the faithful to “sing the Mass”, please pick up a sheet containing the Kyrie, Gloria, etc., in order to participate more fully in the Noon High Mass. Thank you!

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

Home Schooling Families:  A new group for home schooling families will begin meeting at Saint John’s in the Fall.  This group will include supervised group activities and support, and will meet the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of each month from 10:00 a.m. until noon, in the Monsignor Nagle Hall, beginning in September.  All ages are welcome.  Anyone who is interested, or who would like more information, please contact Julianne DeMarco at (203) 966-3641, juliannedemarco@yahoo.com OR contact Janet Lancaster at (203) 637-3301, jmlancaster@optonline.net.  This group is NOT a parish school, nor is it sponsored by Saint John’s Parish, but is a private initiative by home schooling parents who are parishioners.  The first meeting will be Tuesday, September 22nd.

 Year of the Priest. . . Pope Benedict XVI  has named this year [June 19, 2009-June 19, 2010] The Year of the Priest  in order to foster vocations to the priesthood and to fortify the devotion of priests to the Church. Please encourage your sons, grandsons, brothers, nephews, friends and neighbors to consider God’s calling to be priests. Every single Catholic young man HAS THE MORAL OBLIGATION to consider the priesthood. Our diocese is blessed with our own local seminary for young men to consider the priesthood without cost or obligation: St. John Fisher Residence, on Newfield Avenue. Speak to one of the parish priests, or call Fisher: 322-5331.

 St. Maurice Church 358 Glenbrook Rd….Is holding a CASH BINGO on Friday, Sept. 18th.  Doors open at 6PM.  First game is at 7PM.  There will also be a MULTI-VENDOR CRAFT FAIR & TAG SALE at the open air market on Saturday Sept. 19th from 9AM—5PM, rain or shine.  (Refreshments available at both events)  For more information call: 324-3434.

Parish Ladies’ Group. . . The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society will resume weekly Saturday meetings on October 3rd. . We meet in the Rectory, and begin at 9:30 a.m. with coffee and conversation, move into prayer, adoration and a spiritual conference, and conclude by 11:00a.m. All ladies of the parish are welcome. Just walk in!

Malta House in Norwalk…Provides a nurturing home to homeless pregnant women and their babies. In these difficult economic times, we are especially in need of the following items: Good Start Formula (orange can 0-12 months), diapers sizes 4 and 5, baby wipes, paper plates, paper napkins, toilet paper, paper towels, plastic spoons, forks and knives, and gift cards for any grocery stores, Wal-Mart or Home Depot.  Any and all donations are gratefully accepted.  If you have questions please contact Ginny Casey at GCasey@maltahouse.org or 203/857-0088. (Do not bring donations to the Parish).

Mass Intentions

Saturday, August 29
  4:00  +Charles Kronk, Charles Kronk, Jr. & Nicholas Churley req. Mary Churley 
Sunday, August 30
 7:30     Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
10:00 +Jennifer Tomasello 1st Anniversary req. Pinto Family
12:00 +James & Ismalia Machado req Lilian & Alvina Ramos
6:00 +Patrick Kane & Family req. Estate of Catherine Kane & Family
Monday, August 31
 8:00 +Patrick Solimando req. William & Ann Dee
12:10   Sister Gesuina req. Lancaster Family
Tuesday, September 1
 8:00   Thanksgiving req. Thang Nguyen
12:10 +Carol Somody 1st Anniversary req. Pinto Family
Wednesday, September 2
 8:00 +Margaret M. Timon req. Thomas A. Timon
12:10   Sister Jesse req. Lancaster Family
Thursday, September 3
 8:00   Special Intention Fr. Terrence P. Walsh
12:10 +Jennifer Tomasello 1st Anniversary req. Terenzio Family
Friday, September 4
 8:00   Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
12:10 +John Kim req. Joseph & Mary Kim
Saturday, September 5
 8:00   Special Intention Young Mary Kim req. Joseph & Mary Kim
12:10 +Frank Skehan req. Maureen & Rick Carpiniello

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.

St. Dominic Savio Society…For the spiritual formation of young men from 8th – 12thgrades.  Questions, please contact Frank Marchetti at (203) 434-4734 or Ferry Galbert at (203) 324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society…For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12thgrades.  Questions, please contact Rosa Marchetti at (203) 348-0232.

St. Leo’s Parish:. . . 29th Annual Parish Fair.  Join us Tuesday Sept. 1st thru Saturday Sept. 5th.  Ride bracelets are available from 2PM—6PM for $20.  Sample international foods, enjoy live entertainment, and try your luck in the Bingo Parlor, or the $10 raffle with a first prize 2009 Mercedes-Benz C350 W4 sedan.  For more information, call Denise Esposito at 322-1669 x227.

St. John’s in The  NEWS . .
125 YEARS AGO, or so:

The Connecticut catholic:
September 6, 1884:  Stamford. “Our parochial school opened last Monday with a large attendance. The children, after hearing Mass, marched from the church to the school on Meadow Street. The people of this parish were surprised and grieved to learn on last Sunday the death of Rev. Eugene Gaffney of Thomaston. Father Gaffney, after his ordination, came to Stamford in 1867 and remained here about four years, acting as assistant pastor under Father O’Neil and Father Fagan. He was largely instrumental in organizing St. Patrick’s Temperance society, which today is in a good and prosperous condition. By his death the diocese loses a good and faithful worker in God’s service.”

 100 years ago, or so:
The Stamford advocate:
September 3, 1914:  DELLA CHIESA IS POPE—Takes Name Benedict XV.  “Less than four months after he had been elevated to the Cardinalate , Cardinal Giacomo Della Chiesa, Archbishop of Bologna, Italy, was today elected to the papacy, succeeding Pope Pius X, who died on August 20. The election of Cardinal Giacomo Della Chiesa, who was made a Cardinal on May 23 last, at the last Consistory, came as a surprise, as his name had not been mentioned among the list of prominent candidates.”

50 years ago, or so:
The  Hartford courant
September 3, 1953:  New Archdiocese Unites State and Rhode Island.  “Catholics of Connecticut and Rhode Island have been joined under a new archdiocesan province with its metropolitan see at Hartford, according to an announcement Wednesday in Washington, D.C., by Archbishop Almeto Giovanni Cigognani, papal delegate to the U.S. Two New Dioceses Formed. Establishment of the two new Connecticut dioceses involved the following changes: The Most Rev. Lawrence J. Shehan, auxiliary to the archbishop of Baltimore, will become bishop of the Bridgeport Diocese, which includes all of Fairfield County. The Rt. Rev. Msgr. Bernard J. Flanagan, chancellor of Burlington, Vermont, becomes bishop of the Norwich diocese.”

“Peter, do you love Me?”                                                                                   -Fr Terry Walsh

      The most important journey we take in this life begins at the threshold of what can be an unfamiliar road – a road that can only be traveled with the help of God’s grace – it is that spiritual journey that leads to union with God. If we ask Him, our Lord will take us along the most beautiful roads. If we ask Him, He’ll bring us to spiritual heights that we simply haven’t even begun to imagine. The journey begins with the firm conviction that Jesus is truly present – in our midst – in all the most ordinary circumstances of our lives. As we begin to seek the path of holiness, we might begin to wonder exactly how it is our Lord will lead us along this unfamiliar road. The answer begins with a question: “Do you love Me?”
 Jesus asks each one of us the same question He put to Peter on the shores of Galilee. “Do you love Me?” It’s a question that demands thoughtful reflection. We ought to take care not to respond impetuously. If we take the leap – if we take that 1st step into the Heart of Jesus – everything will change! We’ll begin to see through the eyes of God. Our values will necessarily change. It all begins with that 1st step – that “I believe” – that sincere desire for fulfillment that can only be found in Christ – that pure gift of faith which is given when we ask for it. If we let Him, our Lord will astound us with incomprehensible graces and boundless love. If we let Him, He’ll captivate our hearts and minds and open to us the way to everlasting peace and happiness. He’ll reveal Himself to us – deep in our hearts – so that we will abide in His love. Perhaps, at this very moment, you find yourself at this crossroad in your spiritual journey to God. The world tugs away at your heart – it tries to pull you away from what is truly good and pure and beautiful with what is fleeting. Yet, your heart searches for something more – something you somehow know the world cannot provide. There’s a spark for what is real and true and holy. Perhaps, as you stand at that crossroad, you gaze down the trail blazed by Jesus and consider – for a moment – the cost. What will it take to travel that road? Do you ponder with wonder and awe – and with confidence? Or, has fear clouded your vision? What if I get lost along the road? What if I meet with unexpected difficulties? What will it cost me? While contemplating your path, imagine, for a moment, Jesus standing beside you. You don’t see Him – but He sees you. His gaze waits to see what you’ll choose, hoping you’ll choose Him. He’s almost begging with His eyes – pleading with your soul: “Follow Me – My yoke is easy, My burden Light.” ‘Let Me show you the wonders of my love. Please. Come on…If you only knew the gifts and fruits that await you. If you’d just try – take that first step. Turn off the TV – put aside the internet. Come, spend time with Me. Sit with me for 10 minutes and ask for whatever you want – I’ll give it to you.’ Is it wisdom you want – so that you can help your children negotiate the snares of this world – you’ll have it. Is it an understanding heart you desire – so that you’ll have compassion for those poor, forgotten souls suffering all around you – consider it done. Perhaps you seek the gift of fortitude – so that you can muster the strength to forgive a wound suffered at the hands of a friend – or, to ask forgiveness for a wound you’ve inflicted on another. I can help. Ask Me. Walk with ME. I am really and truly present. I’ll lead you – if you let Me. Trust ME. Peter did. He traveled the road of holiness. It wasn’t without suffering and trial. In Jesus’ greatest hour of need, Peter stared down the path of holiness and ran the other way. It cost too much. In the worst night of Jesus’ life, when He needed Peter the most, he denied Him – 3 times! That hurt. Yes, Peter fell. He struggled. He failed. He suffered the crushing agony of denying Jesus. He knew Him and still, He denied Him. But Peter did not despair. How many times have we been in Peter’s shoes? How many times have we turned away from Jesus at home, at school, at work? How many times have we calculated the cost and said ‘I’m not going to pay that price!’ It’s too hard. I can’t forgive. I won’t forgive. Peter, “Do you love Me?” Peter answered Jesus by emptying Himself of his self-will. He stood up for Jesus and proclaimed His Name to the world – he no longer counted the cost – so that everyone could share in the same gift of love that he discovered when he took up his Cross and followed Jesus. He was ridiculed, thrown into prison, endured persecution – YEAH – it cost Him – and through each and every trial, Peter entered deeper and deeper into the abode of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. He was filled with the Holy Spirit. He forgot himself and so discovered himself. He fed the lambs; he tended the sheep with the deepest humility – the greatest love – ultimately stretching out his hands – it cost him his life. If today you find yourself at that Crossroads, standing at the threshold – peering out at path of holiness that lies before you – considering the cost – listen for that gentle plea – “Be not afraid. Follow Me – I’ll provide all the necessary things – just say yes.”  Can you hear the echo of His voice in your soul: “Do you love Me?” I will fill your heart with every grace and blessing and like Peter, you too will be able to say with all your heart and soul, “Yes, Lord, I love you!”