For the entire bulletin withpictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday October 11, 2009
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Pastor’s Corner. . . The heart of the church is the sanctuary. On the morning of the church’s dedication, May 30, 1886, the walls were simply whitewashed, the only color came from the stained glass. The original altar rail was carved wood, and there was no woodwork on the sanctuary walls. These were added in the 1920’s and 1930’s. But the three windows in the sanctuary and the high altar were there, along with the heavy wooden bench or sedillia for the priests, a carved wooden “throne” for the bishop and a small wooden table as a credence table, presently in the rectory. Today’s altar is original.
The altar and tabernacle formed the centerpiece of the church: everything in the building leads to this. Designed and constructed by the firm of Theis and Trueg, and costing a whopping $4,500—a small fortune in 1886—, the altar and tabernacle were marveled at by the local press and citizenry of Stamford. Periodic payments began on July 6th, and the first shipment of marble began arriving in Stamford by September. As the altar was being built, it was opined that, “when completed, the altar will be second to none in New England” [The Connecticut Catholic, September 12, 1885]. Until the church dedication in May, 1886, nearly every edition of The Advocate and The Connecticut Catholic would run articles on the progress of the church, with particular interest in the altar. The Advocate’s writers had front row seats, since the paper’s original offices were housed in the Italian neo-Renaissance building still directly across Atlantic Street from the church. By November, 1885, the interior of the church was nearly completed, and it was opened for inspection by the general public, who flocked to visit the largest stone church in the state. The Advocate noted that “Competent judges pronounce this ‘the most beautiful altar in the United States’” [November 20, 1885]. Originally the altar statues were not provided, since the parish could not afford them until years later. It has been suggested that the altar design is based upon the August 21, 1879 apparitions at Knock, Ireland.
The high altar is gothic in design, of carved white Carrara marble with columns and inlaid panels of golden Mexican onyx, rising to fill the church apse, and set off by the massive triumphal sanctuary arch. The unifying motif is of grape vines intertwined with shamrocks decorates the capitals and architraves of the altar. This motif is a sign of the power of the Eternal Love of Christ which nourishes and supports us in the Eucharist. It was, in 1886, that Love that strengthened and united the beleaguered founding Irish Catholic community of Stamford around its parish church, protecting itself from the decades of often violent intolerance by the local Protestant majority. The central image in the hear of the “table” or mensa of the altar, is the Lamb of God, as described in the Book of Revelation. Resting on the Book of the Gospels with seven seals, and bearing the banner of the Resurrection, the Lamb is Christ, triumphant over death who reveals the truth of God through His Church in Scripture. On either end of the altar are carved arches, decorated with flowers and shamrocks, that originally served as credence niches for the altar servers.
Resting on the altar is the tabernacle, in the form of a castle with decorative turrets. A central marble baldacchino rises above the tabernacle. This canopy is a splendid piece of carved marble work. Open on the front side, its sole support is provided by two lithe golden pilasters at the rear of the canopy; the baldacchino supports an elegant structure designed originally as a throne for the exposition of the Most Blessed Sacrament. It now houses the magnificent cast brass altar crucifix with chiseled sterling silver corpus of Our Lord, from the original 1851 church. The marble reredos rises above the tabernacle. Raised on two steps, the reredos is composed of four niches between three towers. The niches were originally empty, but are now occupied by four marble angels, each 5 feet in height, with downcast eyes, leading the worshippers’ gaze to the tabernacle. The angels carry cruets of wine and water or an incense thurible, as if serving the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass offered on the altar mensa below them. The niches are gabled in marble, flanked with golden onyx pilasters and crowned by a forest of turrets, graceful finials caped by fleurs-de-lis, and crocketed roofs. Flanking the two far ends of the reredos are two fifteen foot towers, likewise of white marble with golden onyx pilasters, inlaid panels and columns, crocketed roofs, turret, finials and fleurs-de-lis. The entire altar is crowned by a central 30 foot tower, within whose niche a four foot marble state of the Archangel Gabriel sounds the trumpet of the Last Judgment. The tower is crowned by a marble cross. The sanctuary lamp dates from 1896, a gift from the Brennan Family to commemorate Fr. William Roger’s 25th ordination anniversary.
Whenever we enter our beautiful church, the Mother Church of all Catholic churches and institutions in southern Fairfield County, we should offer a little prayer for the people, religious sisters and parishioners who built this beautiful church for the glory of God and for the strengthening of the faith of subsequent Catholics of Stamford.—Mons. Stephen DiGiovanni
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Please pray for the sick…Peggy Pikul, Billy Therriault, Wendy Woodin, David Lloyd, John Castellano, Janet Rodgers, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans, Margaret Romaine, Annette Mellace, Charla Nash, Ruth Alexander
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Please pray for those who have recently died…Theodore Pikul, Rosemary Hynes Finn, George T. Murphy, William Morris, Jesus Cala, Liliane Joelle Tsemo, Elizabeth A. Coughlin, Hector Jance, Paul Rittman, Gerard P. Albert, 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
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St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies … Each Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in the Rectory. We’re studying the 4th century Ecclesiastical History by Eusebius of Caesarea. Join us.
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St. Anne Society: Meets Sunday, November 1st All Saints Day. Adoration 5 to 5:30 followed by Pizza and Pasta in the Hall and a talk offered by Fr Bob Kinnally. All are welcome!
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 a beginner course. Come join us.
Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets every Thursday evening at 6:30 p.m. in the rectory. Class is closed to new students.
Bible Study: Thursdays, 7:30 pm in the rectory: This year “The Gospel of Matthew.”
Religious Education: Please call Fr. Walsh, our Director of Religious education, for further information about the program. 203-324-1553, ext 14.
R.C.I.A. . . . Will meet Tuesday evenings 7:30PM—8:30PM in the rectory, October 2009 – May 2010. Classes start October 20th. Please have Sacramental Records sent to St. John’s. Texts: Bible and the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. (available in the bookstore)
Coffee Hour…After the 10:00 a.m. Mass. All are welcome.
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 November 3rd.
Malta House. . . Benefit concert: October 30th at 8:00 pm in the Norwalk Concert Hall at the Norwalk City Hall: 125 East Avenue. For more info & tickets: 203-857-0088.
Council of Catholic Women. . . The Diocesan Council will hold Marian devotions at St. Roch’s Church, Greenwich, on Sunday, October 18th at 3:00 pm., followed by a light reception. All Catholic women from around the diocese are welcome.
More info: call Marie Walsh: 203-569-2559.
The Shippan Point Garden Club… presents “Off to School”, a standard flower show at the University of Connecticut, Stamford Campus on Thursday, October 22nd 1PM – 5PM and Friday, October 23rd 9AM – 2PM. Free Admission. Open to the Public.
Sunday October 4, 2009 $ 12,261.37
Sunday October 5, 2008 $ 12,204.45 “I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta
October 18th Sunday Readings: Is 53:10-11; Heb 4:14-16; Mk 10:35-45 or 10:42-45.
Hymns for this weekend . . . (1) 260 (2) 255. The Creed for the Noon Mass may be found in the hymnal at No. 289.
St. John’s Children’s Choir . . . Please consider enrolling your child in the Children’s Choir which sings for the 10:00 Family Mass on Sundays, alongside the Adult Choir (see below). Rehearsals, at which children learn about singing and reading music, are held each Saturday from 1:00-1:45 pm., begin this weekend. The choir is open to boys and girls, ages seven and above, who can match a pitch and who are willing to make a weekly commitment. Please call Scott Turkington for more information, 324-1553, ext. 18 or STurkington@optonline.net.
Calling all Singers! . . . 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 attend 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.
Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass . . . Mass Ordinary: Missa secunda – Hans Leo Hassler, 1562-1612.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Si iniquitates (O Lord, if you were to take into account our iniquities, who would withstand the test? But forgiveness abides in you, O God of Israel. Out of the depths have I cried to you, O Lord; Lord, hear my voice. [Ps. 130:3,4,1,2]); Alleluia Qui timent Dominum (Let those who fear the Lord put their trust in him; he is their help and their protection. [Psalm 114:11]); Offertory Recordare mei (Remember me, O Lord, you who dominate all authority; put the right words on my lips, so that my speech may be convincing in the presence of the King. [Esther 14:12,13]); Communion Aufer a me (Remove from me all scorn and contempt, for I have kept your commandments; for your law is the object of my meditations. [Psalm 119:22,24]).
Offertory motet: De profundis – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, 1756-1791 (Out of the depths have I cried unto thee, O Lord. Lord, hear my voice: let thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications. If thou, Lord, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand? But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared. I wait for the Lord, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope. My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning: I say, more than they that watch for the morning. Let Israel hope in the Lord: for with the Lord there is mercy, and with him is plenteous redemption. And he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities. [Ps. 130]).
Communion motet: Ave verum Corpus – Sir Edward Elgar, 1857-1934 (Hail true Body, born of Mary the virgin; suffering, sacrificed truly on the cross for men; from whose pierced side water flowed and blood. Be merciful to us at the judgement of death, O sweet Jesus, O merciful Jesus, O Jesus Son of Mary. [From a 14th cent. Gradual at Limoges, trans. Rev. A. Fortescue]).
Trinity Catholic High School. . . Open House at Trinity Catholic High School will be held on Thursday evening, October 15th at 7:00PM. All 8th, 7th and 6th grade students and their parents are cordially invited. The entrance exam for 8th grade students will be on Saturday, October 24th at 8:00AM. For information, call the TCHS Admissions Office: 203-322-3401, ext. 32 or email: email@example.com.
Trinity Catholic Middle School. . . Is holding an Open House on Saturday, October 24th from 10AM to 12 Noon in our building at 948 Newfield Avenue, Stamford. The school is located on the same campus as Trinity Catholic High School. This is a wonderful opportunity to meet the Administration and Teachers, tour the facility, learn about the curriculum and have all of your questions answered. Parents and students interested in a challenging academic program in a faith based school are encouraged to attend.
Mass Intentions+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, October 10
4:00 +Members of DeRosa, Kronk, Capobianco Families & Edwin Clark req. John Joan Kronk
Sunday, October 11
10:00 +Peggy Walsh req. Fr. Walsh
12:00 +Joseph Peter Young req. Joseph & Agnes Kung
6:00 +Patrick Kane & Family req. Estate of Catherine Kane & Family
Monday, October 12
8:00 Pablo & Angela Labrosciane 1st Anniversary req. Sharon Gannon
12:10 +Giuseppe & Caterina Schinella req. Pugliese Family.
Tuesday, October 13
8:00 +Elizabeth Pepe Troilo req. Nicholas Troilo, her son
12:10 Special Intention Maria Francesca Francese req. Pugliese Family
Wednesday, October 14
8:00 +Evelyn Hardart Murray req. Richard A. Foreman
12:10 +Dorothy Rusinak req. Mary Churley
Thursday, October 15
8:00 Special Intention Frank Pugliese req. Frank Pugliese
12:10 +Maureen Elaine Smith & Smith Families req. Daughter
Friday, October 16
8:00 +Special Intention Joseph Hahn Kim req. Mary Kim
12:10 Michael & Enrica Sette req. Pugliese Family
Saturday, October 17
8:00 Special Intention Young Mary Kim req. Joseph Kim
12:10 Forgotten Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.
Eucharistic Adoration: Fridays, 8:30 a.m. – 12:00 noon.
Holy Name Society … For all men of the parish: In the rectory every Friday morning
for coffee, Eucharistic adoration, benediction & prayer: 7:00 – 8:00 a.m. All men of the parish are welcome. Just walk in!
Parish Ladies’ Group. . . The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society meets each Saturday in the Rectory, beginning 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.
Religious Education: Dear Parents, if you have any old Faith and Life Series Books from previous years of Religious Ed that are no longer being used at home for study, we could use them here at the Parish. Just bring them in on Sunday and leave them at the table in the Hall. Thanks very much.
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 – 12th grades. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert at (203) 324-1553 ext. 22.
St. Maria Goretti Society…For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th
grades. Questions, please contact Rosa Marchetti at (203) 348-0232.
The Legion of Mary…has begun here at St. John’s. All are welcome. Please call Fr. Walsh if interested
St. John’s in The NEWS . . .
The Hartford courant:
150 years ago, or so:
October 17, 1857: Religious Intelligence. “A new Roman Catholic Church was dedicated at Stamford, on the 6th inst. The Rev. Mr. Hart of New Haven, and Rev. Mr. Hughes, of Hartford, were the officiating priests. ” EDITOR’S NOTE: This article refers to the rededication of the expanded original church on Meadow (Hawthorne) Street.
The stamford advocate:
125 years ago, or so:
October 12, 1883: Roman Catholic Conference. “The quarterly conference of the Catholic clergymen residing in the New Haven district of this Diocese was held today at St. John’s R.C. Church in this town, Bishop McMahon presiding. The conference was opened by solemn High Mass, with Rev. T. Walsh, of Georgetown, Conn. as celebrant; Rev. T. Cronin as Deacon; Rev. J. Ryle, as Sub-Deacon; and Rev. H.T. Walsh, as Master of Ceremonies. The exercises of the conference lasted some three hours, and were attended by forty-eight priests.”
100 years ago, or so:October 13, 1910: FIRST PRIZE FOR STAMFORD. “The Knights of Columbus received the first prize after the big parade in Bridgeport, yesterday, and there was a general opinion in Bridgeport last night that they should have received the second also. The committee of three, William E. Burniham, Frank. J. Mulcahy and William Lieberum awarded the cups as follows: Largest number of men representing any one council—St. Augustine Council, Stamford, with 151 men.”
50 years ago, or so:
October 16, 1958: Stamford Native Marks 25th Year Of Priesthood. “The Rev. Walter Albert Daly, O. Carm. celebrated the silver jubilee of his ordination to the priesthood with a solemn Mass of Thanksgiving at St. Simon’s Stock Church, Bronx, N.Y. One of the ministers of the mass was Rev. William Mel Daly, brother of the celebrant. The jubilarian is a native of Stamford and was a member of St. John’s Roman Catholic Church.”
St. Margaret Mary Alacoque and the Sacred Heart of Jesus– Fr. Terry Walsh
On October 16th we will celebrate the Memorial of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, Virgin (1647 – 1690). She was a Sister of the Visitation in a small town in France called Paray-le-Monial, where she experienced mystical revelations of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Margaret Mary had a great devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and through her private revelations was responsible for reviving and spreading the devotion to the Sacred Heart of our Lord. There is a magnificent Mosaic above one of the side altars in St. Peter’s Basilica depicting Jesus hovering above an altar in a sanctuary revealing his Sacred Heart to Margaret Mary who is kneeling in adoration.
In speaking about the love of Christ pouring out from His Sacred Heart, St. Margaret Mary wrote: “It seems to me that our Lord’s earnest desire to have his sacred heart honored in a special way is directed toward renewing the effects of redemption in our souls. For the sacred heart is an inexhaustible fountain and its sole desire is to pour itself out into the hearts of the humble so as to free them and prepare them to lead lives according to his good pleasure. From this divine heart three streams flow endlessly. The first is the stream of mercy for sinners; it pours into their heart sentiments of contrition and repentance. The second is the stream of charity which helps all in need and especially aids those seeking perfection to find the means of surmounting their difficulties. From the third stream flow love and light for the benefit of his friends who have attained perfection; these he wishes to unite to himself so that they may share his knowledge and commandments and, in their individual ways, devote themselves wholly to advancing his glory. This divine heart is an abyss of all blessings, and into it the poor should submerge all their needs. It is an abyss of joy in which all of us can immerse our sorrows. It is an abyss of lowliness to counteract our foolishness, an abyss of mercy for the wretched, an abyss of love to meet our every need.” Therefore, you must unite yourselves to the heart of our Lord Jesus Christ, both at the beginning of your conversion in order to obtain proper dispositions, and at its end in order to make reparation. Are you making no progress in prayer? Then you need only offer God the prayers which the Savior has poured out for us in the sacrament of the altar. Offer God his fervent love in reparation for your sluggishness. In the course of every activity pray as follows: ‘My God, I do this or I endure that in the heart of your Son and according to his holy counsels. I offer it to you in reparation for anything blameworthy or imperfect in my actions.’ Continue to do this in every circumstance of life. And every time that some punishment, affliction or injustice comes your way, say to yourself: ‘Accept this as sent to you by the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ in order to unite yourself to him.’ But above all preserve peace of heart. This is more valuable than any treasure. In order to preserve it there is nothing more useful than renouncing your own will and substituting for it the will of the divine heart. In this way his will can carry out for us whatever contributes to his glory, and we will be happy to be his subjects and to trust entirely in him.”
In reporting about the Crucifixion, St. John writes in the Gospel, “One of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water”(John 19:34). Earlier in the Gospel, Jesus speaks about these “Living Waters” that will well up from within all who are baptized into His Mystical Body and faithfully abide in His love. He offers these ‘streams’ of grace all who seek Him.