For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday December 13, 2009

Pastor’s Corner. . .During these final two weeks of Advent, let’s read from works by some of the Church’s great saints about the upcoming Feast of Christmas. So, here is the first installment explaining why the Eternal, invisible God became a man, born in Bethlehem:

“God’s Son, existing before time, invisible, bodiless, light flowing from light, fountain of immortal life, expression of the archetypal Godhead, God’s perfect image. God’s Son bestowed himself on us as His images; became flesh for the sake of mankind’s flesh; and took an intellectual soul for the sake of mankind’s soul, so that like may cleanse like; in a word, He takes to Himself all that is human except sin, in order to share what He has, His divine life, with us.
“He who enriches others becomes poor, for He suffers the poverty of my fleshly condition so that I may win the riches of His Godhead. He who is everything becomes nothing, for His glory [as God] is hidden a brief while so that I may become a sharer in His divine riches.
“What are these riches of God’s goodness? What is this mystery which relates to me? I had received the divine image [when I was conceived] but threw it away [by sin]. He takes my flesh in order to bring salvation to His image [us] and immortality to my flesh; He thus enters into a new fellowship with us, far more marvelous than that with the first Adam. Through the manhood He made His own, God would sanctify all men and women. He would overcome the tyrant, Satan, by force [the Cross]. He would liberate us and bring us back to Himself through His Son, the Mediator—all this to glory of the Father to whom the Son bows in all things. The Good Shepherd came to the straying sheep, found us, set us on those shoulders that bore the Cross, and bore us into eternal life. God had to become man and to die that we might live.”
[St. Gregory Nazianzen, Sermon 45]

“Lord, You dwell in inaccessible light? Indeed, but where is it, and how shall I approach the unapproachable? Who shall guide me and lead me into hat light that I may see you in it? What signs shall help me find you? For I have never seen you, Lord God, and do not know your face.
“Exalted Lord, what am I, this wretched exile of yours to do, your servant tormented by love of you but banished far from you? I yearn to see you, but your face is too far off. . . For, though you are my Lord and God, I have never seen you. You made me to see you, but I have never yet done what I was made for.” [St. Anselm, Proslogion, 1].

“Something which has existed since the beginning, that we have heard, and we have seen with our own eyes; that we have watched and touched with our hands: The Word, who is life—That life was made visible; we saw it and we are giving our testimony.” [I John 1:1-3]

“I adore one God in Three Persons: God the Father, God the Son made flesh, and God the Holy Spirit—one God. I do not adore the creation rather than the Creator, but I adore the One who became a creature [the Second Person of the Trinity, whom we call Jesus], who was formed as I was, who clothed Himself in creation without weakening or departing from His divinity, that He might raise our mortal nature in glory and make us partakers of His divine nature. . . Therefore, I can draw an image of the invisible God, not as invisible, but as having become visible for our sakes by partaking of flesh and blood. I. . . [can] draw a picture of God who became visible in the flesh.” [St. John the Damascene, On Divine Images, 4]. -Mons. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick… Lois Porter, Joseph Lasko, Billy Therriault, Wendy Woodin, John Castellano, Janet Rodgers, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans, Margaret Romaine.

Please pray for those who have recently died… William Wolf, Alfred Gautrau, David Lloyd, Evelyn Mahan, Joseph Logsdail, Peggy Pikul, Monsignor John Horgan Kung, 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.

Retirement Fund for Religious Collection . . . Please drop your special envelope into the ONE basket that will be passed at the Offertory. There will only be one collection today.

Parish Advent Retreat. . . THIS WEEKEND: December 11, 12 & 13th: PATRICK MADRID, world renowned author and speaker will deliver a variety of lectures on aspects of our Catholic faith and life. Check the parish website www.stjohnsstamford.com for full details and times. These lectures are without charge and open to everyone who would like to attend—parishioners and non-parishioners; Catholics and non-Catholics alike. Eucharistic adoration and confession during each evening session. Even if you can only attend one or two lectures, come, join us.

Basilica Inauguration. . . Mark your calendar: Bishop Lori will formally inaugurate the Basilica of Saint John the Evangelist on Monday February 22nd at 7 pm with Solemn Evening Prayer and Benediction celebrating the Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter, followed by a light reception. All are invited.

Mass On-Line. . . Visit the parish website: www.stjohnsstamford.com; click the photo of the church up top, and you’ll see live all that’s going on in church, daily.

Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Group. . . All ladies of the parish are welcome to join us each Saturday in the rectory beginning at 9:30 a.m. for coffee, conversation and prayer.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Will NOT meet until January: date to be announced.

The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets each Wednesday at 6:15 pm in the rectory. We’re translating Egeria’s early fifth century Diary of a Pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Join us.

Introduction to Ecclesiastical Latin . . . Meets each Wednesday at 6:00 pm in the rectory.

Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets each Thursday at 6:30 pm in the rectory.

Bible Study:. . .Meets each Thursday at 7:30 pm in the rectory.

Convert class. . .Tuesday evenings 7:30 pm—8:30 pm in the rectory. Call Fr. Walsh, ext. 14.

Legion of Mary . . . Meets each Wednesday at 7:30 pm in the rectory.

Coffee Hour. . . Each Sunday after the 10:00 a.m. Mass in the parish hall. 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 January 5th.

Sunday December 6, 2009 $ 12,422.03
Sunday December 7, 2008 $ 11,985.49

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

December 20th Sunday Readings: Mi 5:1-4a; Heb 10:5-10; Lk 1:39-45.

Hymns for this weekend . . . (1) 4 (2) 9.

Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass
Mass Ordinary: Kyrie XVII A – Graduale Romanum; Sanctus & Agnus Dei from
Missa ‘La la maistre Pierre’ – Orlando di Lasso, 1532-1594.
The Creed for the Noon Mass may be found in the hymnal at No. 289.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Gaudete in Domino (Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say, rejoice. Let your modesty be known to all men, for the Lord is nigh. Be nothing solicitous, but in every thing by prayer let your requests be made known to God. Lord, you have blessed your land; you have turned away the captivity of Jacob. [Phil 4:4-6; Ps. 85:2]); Alleluia Excita, Domine (Stir up your might, O Lord, and come to save us. [Psalm 80:3]); Offertory Benedixisti, Domine (O Lord, you have blessed your land, you have put an end to Jacob’s captivity; you have forgiven the guilt of your people. [Psalm 85:2]); Communion Dicite: Pusillanimes (Say: “Take courage, you who are fainthearted, and do not fear; behold, our God will come and he will save us.” [Cf. Isaiah 35:4]).
Offertory Motet: Rejoice in the Lord Alway – attributed to John Redford, d. 1547 (Rejoice in the Lord alway, and again I say rejoice. Let your softness be known unto all men : the Lord is e’en at hand. Be careful for nothing : but in all prayer and supplication let your petitions be manifest unto God with giving of thanks. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesu. Amen. [Philippians IV:4-7]).
Communion Motet: I look from afar – adapted from Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, 1525-1594 (I look from afar: And lo, I see the power of God coming,and a cloud covering the whole earth. Go ye out to meet him and say: Tell us, art thou he that should come to reign over thy people Israel? High and low, rich and poor, one with another, Go ye out to meet him and say: Hear, O thou Shepherd of Israel, thou that leadest Joseph like a sheep, Tell us, art thou he that should come? Stir up thy strength, O Lord, and come to reign over thy people Israel. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost. I look from afar: And lo, I see the power of God coming, and a cloud covering the whole earth. Go ye out to meet him and say: Tell us, art thou he that should come to reign over thy people Israel? [Matin Responsory for Advent]).
Postlude: Rorate cœli (The Advent Prose – Traditional Roman Chant [The text may be found in the hymnal at No. 305.]).

Singers, men and women, for the 10:00 a.m. Family Mass are needed. This volunteer choir rehearses 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.

Christmas Fair. . . Was a great success. Our thanks are due to the ladies who worked so hard during these past months: Marjan Falek, Mirella Badetti, Tracy Banahan, Landa Leute, Maude Hughes, Lisa D’Acunto, Nancy Finlay, Scholastica Nabwire, Angela Marchetti, Maria Mossa, Josephine Marena, Maureen Capiello, Jane Marie Raiteri, Eileen Tarleton, Noreen DeSoye, Betty Czarnecki, Beth Brucker, Sue DePreta, Monica O’Brien, Janet Allister, Mickey, Jackie and Rosemary, Vera Viola, Alice Campofranco, Diane Jackson, Catherine Olnek, Jennifer Marciano, Sharon Gannon, Noreen DeSoye, Judy DeFelice, Donna Cycon, Mary Cycon, Christine O’Brien Costantino, Juanita Evans, the Maria Goretti Society Young Ladies, and the many other ladies who donated their time and provided baked goods, prizes or their time. There were, also a few men who helped: Jeff Spetland, Paul Hughes, Tony Colon, Andrew Nabwire, Dan Murphy, Ferry Galbert, Phil DeFelice, Tom Banahan, and Tom Kolenberg. Thank you all for your devotion to our parish.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, December 12
4:00 +John & Evelyn Sexton req. Hannah Young
Sunday, December 13
7:30 Souls in Purgatory
10:00 +Theodora Kim req. Joseph & Mary Kim
12:00 Antonio & Maria Marchetti req. Donna Sticho
6:00 +Patrick Kane & Family req. Estate of Catherine Kane & Family
Monday, December 14
8:00 +Wendy Fandre req. Paul Murphy
12:10 +Marie Wenthen req. McAleer Family
Tuesday, December 15
8:00 +Carmen Trivino req. Maria, Daughter
12:10 Rose Donahue req. Marie Carr
Wednesday, December 16
8:00 +John Maloney req. wife Mary
12:10 Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.
Thursday, December 17
8:00 +Patrick Kane & Family req. Estate of Catherine Kane & Family
12:10 +Vincent J. Freccia, Jr. Christmas Remembrance req. Dolores – wife
Friday, December 18
8:00 +John Janik req. Lucille Lester
12:10 +Benjamin & Caroline Dzioba Family req. Bosilevas Family
Saturday, December 19
8:00 +John Kim req. Joseph & Mary Kim
12:10 +Josephine Henson req. John & Laura Pascale

Eucharistic Adoration. . . Will be postponed until completion of the church mural restoration.

Holy Name Society . . . For all men of the parish: In the rectory every Friday morning for coffee, Eucharistic adoration, benediction & prayer: 7:00 – 8:00a.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, it moves into prayer, adoration and a spiritual conference, and concludes by 11:00 a.m. All ladies of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

Religious Education. . . Mass attendance is, of course, required of all our students and it is hoped that all parents will attend Sunday Mass with their children. Classes meet each Sunday morning at 8:30.

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

St. Dominic Savio Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young men from 8th – 12th grades. Questions, please contact Ferry Galbert 324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th grades. The next meeting will be at the rectory on Sunday December 20th after the 12 noon Mass. Questions, please contact Rosa Marchetti at 348-0232.

The Legion of Mary. . . has begun here at St. John’s. All are welcome. Please call Fr. Walsh, ext.14, if interested. We meet on Wednesday Evenings at 7:30pm in the rectory.

St. John’s in the advocate:. . .
100 years ago, or so:
December 20, 1902: FR. O’BRIEN’S ANNIVERSARY. “Rev. James C. O’Brien, pastor of St. John’s R. C. Church, will have been ordained 25 years next Monday. Ordinarily the celebration of a priest’s silver jubilee is attended with considerable ceremony, and this one would be so observed by the members of the church were it not for the expressed desire of Father O’Brien that the anniversary be allowed to pass by without general observance. Early last summer, Father O’Brien announced that he would be 25 years a priest in December, and made a special request that the parishioners refrain from taking any special action regarding it. At the same time, he said that he wished that every effort be made to reduce the debt of the church and would take anything done in that direction as indicative of a feeling of personal esteem for him.”

70 years ago, or so:
December 15, 1937: His Parishioners Fete Fr. Downey In Hartford, Today. “The Rev. John J. Downey, native of Stamford, was feted, today, by the parishioners of St. Peter’s Church, Hartford, on the golden jubilee of his ordination to the priesthood. The parish will hold a reception in his honor tonight. Born in Stamford, April 17, 1861, Father Downey attended the old St. John’s Parochial School when it was on the site of the former church property at what is now State and Hawthorne streets. The priest is a son of the late John and Eliza Hanlon Downey. The family lived during Father Downey’s boyhood on Finney Ave., now known as Finney Lane. Father Downey’s 50 years of service as a priest will be observed tomorrow at 10 a. m. when he will celebrate a solemn Mass of Thanksgiving.”

50 years ago, or so:
December 17, 1957: Parishioners Honor Assistant Pastor at St. John’s Church. “The parishioners of St. John’s Church have paid tribute to a priest who was an assistant pastor at St. John’s for five years until he was appointed pastor of St. Matthew’s Parish, West Norwalk. He is the Rev. James F. McGrath who came to Stamford in 1952 and was appointed pastor of the new parish in West Norwalk by the Most Rev. Lawrence D. Shehan, D.D., bishop of Bridgeport, Nov. 14. The Rt. Rev. Msgr. Nicholas P. Coleman, pastor of St. John’s , was master of ceremonies at the reception for Father McGrath attended by about 200 Monday night in the church basement. The assistant pastors, the Rev. Joseph Potter and the Rev. Edward Scull, spoke briefly in tribute to the former associate.”

Advent Mission: We welcome Patrick Madrid
Friday, December 11
7:00 to 9:30 p.m.
“Search and Rescue: How You can help people come home to the Church”

Saturday, December 12
9:00 to 10:30 a.m.
“Answer me this: How to Respond to Common Questions About Catholicism.”
11:15 a.m. to 12:45 p.m.
“Is Everything up for grabs? A Catholic Critique of Moral Relativism”
2:15 to 4:00 p.m.
“Where is that in the Bible?”
7:30 to 9:00 p.m.
“Any Friend of God’s Is a Friend of Mine: Mary and the Communion of Saints”

Sunday, December 13
8:30 to 9:30 a.m.
“The Case for Christ”
2:00 to 3:30 p.m.
“Pope Fiction: Answers to Myths and Misconceptions About the Papacy”
6:00 to 8:00 p.m.
“Answers to Lies Society Tells You,” such as, “If it feels good, do it.”

-AND-

St Anne Society
Sunday, December 13th
5 pm – Adoration
5:30 pm – Dinner
Pizza & Pasta
6 pm – Patrick Madrid
We will provide the pizza and pasta. We would appreciate it if families could bring salads, drinks and desserts.

Last names beginning with:
A – G: please bring dessert
H – 0: please bring a salad
P – Z: please bring drinks in individual containers
Thank you for your support. We look forward to seeing you on Sunday, the 13th.