For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday January 31, 2009

Pastor ’s Corner. . .
Tuesday, February 2nd, is the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord in the Temple, also known as Candlemas. The celebration recalls the obedience of the Blessed Mother and Saint Joseph to the Law of Moses (Exodus 13:1-3; Leviticus 12:1-8) when they presented Our Lord in the Temple in Jerusalem, 40 days after His birth. It also recalls the mystical fact that Christ is the final sacrifice who brings about the salvation of the world, and that He comes to us daily in every Catholic Church where Mass is celebrated.
The earliest written record of this then long-established celebration comes from the 5th century Diary of a “Pilgrimage to the Holy Land,” by a pilgrim to the Holy Land named Egeria. The Mass celebrated in Jerusalem recalled the historical presentation of Jesus in the Temple, while the procession with lighted candles, a liturgical addition from Rome, referred to the mystical reality of the identity of the Child presented, and to the meaning His life and death would have for the history and salvation of the world. Candlemas on February 2nd links Christmas and Easter, and explains why God became a man: so that Mankind could become God by Christ’s sacrificial death and bodily resurrection.
Throughout the Old Testament, all the prophets spoke of the coming of the Savior. And, as Jesus was presented in the Temple, two further prophecies were fulfilled: that of Simeon, who had been promised by God not to see death until he had first seen the Savior; and that of Anna, the prophetess, who recognized Jesus as the Savior. At the Temple, the Blessed Mother presented Her Son to the Eternal Father as the final sacrifice for the salvation of the world. The reason why the Eternal Son, Second Person of the Most Blessed Trinity, took on human flesh in the womb of the Virgin Mother was in order to offer that human body on the Cross as the ultimate sacrifice to pay for the sins of the world. If Christ had not taught anything, had He not healed or fed anyone, if He had done nothing other than offer Himself on the Cross and rise from the dead, then His work would have been perfect. Yet, in the generosity of the Father, Christ’s work also included His full revelation God, and our response to Him in our daily lives.
The Church blesses candles in honor of this mystical reality to be used in church during the year, and in the homes of the faithful. Each candle represents Christ, the Light of the World. Jesus also told His Apostles, “You are the light of the world”, in that we share in Christ’s work to enlighten the world. The candles blessed today represent Christ in our daily lives. We should let Christ shine in the world by means of our lives of extraordinary virtue and holiness; especially by our charity. The example of the perfect disciple is Our Lady in her humility and obedience to the Law of God.
The custom of blessing throats has arisen through the centuries on Saint Blaise Day, February 3rd. St. Blaise was a Catholic bishop, who saved a child from choking while both were imprisoned during a 4th century persecution of the Church. He is the saint to pray for healing of ailments of the throat. We bless throats using two candles blessed on February 2nd, that are held to form a Cross, and placed on the throat of the person being blessed. The candles represent Christ, the light of the world, and His saving power from His Cross. The prayer recited by the priest is “Through the intercession of Saint Blaise, bishop and martyr, may you be delivered from all diseases of the throat and from every other evil, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.” It is the power of Christ and His Cross, by the intercession of Saint Blaise, which is invoked to heal us from evil. Happy Candlemas.-Mons. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick… Wilfred Baretto, Victims of the earthquake in Haiti, Mary Moriarty, Carmella Micik, Julie Grant, Kay Pullen, Juanita Evans, Lois Porter, Joseph Lasko, Billy Therriault, Wendy Woodin, Janet Rodgers, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans, Margaret Romaine.

Please pray for those who have recently died…Dolores A. Deluca Freccia, Victims of the earthquake in Haiti, Roshah E. DeJean, Paul Reda, Katherine Dziezyc, Mary Halbert, John Castellano, Eugene Lops, Msgr. Lawrence McMahon, Rev. Al Russo, George “Bud” Ayers, 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, Sheila Kilcoyne.

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. ALSO, a light now burns all night in church, illuminating the tabernacle, so you can make a home visit to the Blessed Sacrament.

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. All are invited.

Metropolitan Opera. . .at Saint John’s. Mark your calendar: May 1st, sponsored by the Richard Tucker Foundation and in honor of His Eminence Edward Cardinal Egan, to begin our fundraising efforts to repaint the church interior. Ticket prices and information will be forthcoming.

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

Introduction to Ecclesiastical Latin . . . Meets Wednesdays at 6pm in the rectory.

The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesdays at 6:15 pm in the rectory. We’re translating Egeria’s Diary of a Pilgrimage. High school Latin is sufficient. Please join us.

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

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

The Legion of Mary. . . Meets Wednesdays at 7:30 pm in the rectory. All are welcome.

Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Group. . . Meets Saturdays at 9:30 am in the rectory.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Will meet on February 3rd at 7:30 pm in the rectory.

Moms & Tots . . . A group of moms and their children meets with Fr. Walsh each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30 a.m. Please join us.

Coffee Hour. . . After the 10:00 a.m. Mass. All are welcome.

Pray the Rosary. . . Pray the Rosary with us after the 12:10 PM Mass, Monday through Saturday.

Sunday January 24, 2010 $ 12,141.00
Sunday January 25, 2009 $ 11,858.85

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

February 7th Sunday Readings: Is 6:1-2a, 3-8; 1 Cor 15:1-11 or 15:3-8, 11; Lk 5:1-11.

Hymns for this weekend . . . (1) 216 (2) 110.

Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass
Mass Ordinary: Missa ad fugam – Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, 1525-1594.
All are encouraged to sing the Creed at the Noon Mass, which may be found in the hymnal at No. 289.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Laetetur cor (Let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice; seek the Lord and be strengthened; seek his face for evermore. Give thanks to the Lord and call upon his name; declare his deeds among the gentiles. [Ps. 105:3,4,1]); Alleluia Adorabo ad templum (I will bow down toward your holy temple and give thanks to your name. [Psalm 138:2]); Offertory Bonum est confiteri Domino (It is good to give thanks unto the Lord, and to sing in honour of your name, O Most High. [Psalm 92:2]); Communion Illumina faciem tuam (Let your face shine down upon your servant, deliver me in your mercy. Lord, let me not be confounded, for I have called upon you. [Psalm 31:17,18]).
Offertory Motet: Cantique de Jean Racine – Gabriel-Urbain Fauré, 1845-1924 (Word of God the most high, our sole hope, eternal day of the earth and heavens as we break the silence of the peaceful night divine saviour, look down upon us. Imbue us with the fire of thy great mercy so that hell itself will flee at the sound of your voice disperse the sleep which leads our languishing souls to stray from the path of righteousness. O Christ show your favour to your faithful people who have come together to worship you receive the praises that they offer up to your immortal glory and may they come back laden with the gift of your grace.).
Communion Motet: Dear Lord and Father of Mankind – Sir Charles Hubert Hastings Parry, 1848-1918, arr. D. Willcocks, b. 1919 (Dear Lord and Father of mankind, Forgive our foolish ways! Re-clothe us in our rightful mind, In purer lives thy service find, In deeper reverence praise. In simple trust like theirs who heard, Beside the Syrian sea, The gracious calling of the Lord, Let us, like them, without a word Rise up and follow thee. O Sabbath rest by Galilee! O calm of hills above, Where Jesus knelt to share with thee The silence of eternity, Interpreted by love! [John Greenleaf Whittier]).

Singers are needed for the 10:00 a.m. Family Mass! . . . Our volunteer choir raises hearts and voices in praise of God for the 10:00 AM Family Mass each Sunday. The choir rehearses at 8:15 AM on Sundays only, in the Choir Room. Would you consider lending your voice to our choir? Please call Scott Turkington for more information: 324-1553, ext. 18 or email at STurkington@optonline.net.

Shroud of Turin. . . An in-depth presentation about the Shroud, which is the burial cloth of Our Lord, will be offered in our parish hall on Tuesday, February 16th, at 7:30 pm. Full-sized photographic displays of the shroud and instruments of Our Lord’s Passion, along with the relics of various saints, will be available for close-up inspection . This is provided us by the Confraternity of the Passion International, which is a lay organization of the Passionist Order: a great preparation for Lent. All are welcome; please join us.

Holy Spirit School. . . Open House, February 3rd from 9:30-11:30 a.m. For more information: Mrs. Patricia Torchen: 203-329-1623; www.holyspiritschool.info.

Our Lady Star of the Sea School. . . Open House, January 31st: 12 noon –2pm. For more information: Sr. Anne M. Landry, CND: 203-348-1155. Take-a-Look-Tuesdays: January 12, 19 & 26: 9:30-11:00 a.m.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, January 30
4:00 +Vincent De Vivo 52nd Anniversary req. Munro & De Vivo Families
Sunday, January 31
7:30 Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
10:00 +Frank Russo req. Frank & Beth Carpanzano
12:00 Special Intention Maria & Tony Marchetti req. The Marchetti Family
6:00 People of the Parish
Monday, February 1
8:00 Souls in Purgatory
12:10 Special Intention Christopher Flynn
Tuesday, February 2
8:00 Lillian Janesch req. Cycon Family
12:10 +William J. Cuneo req. The Underhill Family
Wednesday, February 3
8:00 Mary Coffey req. Cycon Family
12:10 +Merinda Pompa req. Teresa Canneto
Thursday, February 4
8:00 +Margaret M. Timon req. Thomas A. Timon
12:10 +Vincenzo Giannitti req. Giannitti Family
Friday, February 5
8:00 +Rev. Georges Mathelier 1st Anniversary Remembrance
12:10 +Rosanne Fazio req. her uncle Frank D’Amico
Saturday, February 6
8:00 In Thanksgiving to God
12:10 Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.

Eucharistic Adoration. . . Each Friday morning, from 8:30 am until noon.

Holy Name Society . . . For all men of the parish: In the rectory every Friday morning for coffee, Eucharistic adoration, benediction & prayer: 7:00 – 8:00a.m. All men of the parish welcome. Just walk in!

The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society . . .meets Saturdays in the Rectory, at 9:30 a.m. Coffee, conversation, Rosary, and a spiritual conference. All ladies of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

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

Pray for an end to legalized 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. Will meet this Sunday in the rectory after the 12 PM Mass. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert 324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th grades. Will meet this Sunday in the rectory after the 12 PM Mass. Questions, contact Suzanna Boswick, 203-554-2004.

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

St. John’s in THE NEWS:. . .
The Hartford courant:
160 years ago, or so:

February 7, 1851: RELIGIOUS ITEMS. “The Roman Catholic Church at Norwalk was consecrated by the Rt. Rev. Bishop O’Reilly of Hartford, on Tuesday of last week. The Church at Stamford was also consecrated by the same Bishop on Sunday last.”

The Connecticut catholic:
130 years ago, or so:

February 7, 1880: STAMFORD. “On last Thursday night a mass meeting was held in the Opera House on behalf of the sufferers in Ireland. Father Rogers was chairman and Father Walsh secretary of the meeting. Several clergymen of different denominations addressed the audience and begged them to contribute a mite of their abundance to those poor people who so sadly need it.”

The stamford advocate:
50 years ago, or so:

February 3 1960: Priests Ordained In Stamford Rites. “In the first Roman Catholic ordination ever performed in Stamford, the Most Rev. Lawrence J. Shehan, D.D., bishop of Bridgeport, conferred the Sacrament of Holy Orders on two Stamford area candidates Tuesday at St. John’s Church. Ordained were the Rev. Charles R. Richter of Stamford and the Rev. John B. Giuliani of Greenwich. Father Richter is the son of the late Mrs. Regina N. Richter. He is the brother of Harry J. Richter, Jr., Francis E. Richter, Mrs. Raymond Downing, Mrs. John McGrath and Mrs. James Andrews, all of Stamford; and Mrs. Donald Vigliotti of Yonkers. He was born Sept. 27, 1930 in Stamford and is a graduate of Stamford High School. Father Giuliani is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Nicola Giuliani, of 353 Greenwich Ave., Greenwich. He was born in Greenwich, Jan. 4, 1932, and received his early education in the public schools of the town. The newly ordained priests will celebrate their first Solemn High Masses Sunday. Father Richter will sing the 11:30 Mass at St. Mary’s Church, Stamford, and Father Giuliani will sing the Mass at 12:15 p.m. at St. Mary’s, Greenwich. Assisting in the ordination service were the Rt. Rev. Msgr. Nicholas P. Coleman, pastor of St. John’s, archdeacon; Rt. Rev. Msgr. George B. Curtiss, chancellor of the diocese, and Very Rev. Msgr. John J. Toomey, secretary to the Bishop; both of Bridgeport, masters of ceremonies; Rev. William A. Genuario of Bridgeport, and the Rev. Vincent P. Cleary and the Rev. Joseph D. Potter, both assistant pastors of St. John’s, assistant masters of ceremonies. The church filled to capacity for the ordination rites.”

The Culture of Life Banquet
-Fr. Terry Walsh
When I was in Junior High, I remember asking a priest to help me better understand Heaven and Hell. I knew that Heaven was good and Hell was bad. I had an image of Heaven as being a place of happiness and an image of Hell as being a sort of firey darkness. I suppose my overall understanding was pretty poor; after all, I didn’t really understand the relationship of the Three Persons of the Trinity and the explosive love They shared among Themselves. I didn’t realize that Heaven was being “caught up into the love of the Holy Trinity” in a life we can not even begin to comprehend and seeing God as He is. I didn’t really grasp the incomprehensible beauty, majesty, peace, and joy of Heaven and the active life the Saints enjoy eternally. No, I just knew I wanted to go to Heaven, but I didn’t really understand much about it. So the priest began to tell me a popular metaphor about Heaven that I was hearing for the first time. He said, “Imagine for a moment that in both Heaven and Hell there were huge banquets. In fact, in each place the banquets looked quite similar – even identical. In both places, the tables went on for miles and miles to accommodate so many people. Now, set upon both tables were the most delicious delights – every good food prepared to perfection. One could almost taste the food through its pleasant aroma. Nothing was missing. It was just amazing. Now, there was only one little problem. At both banquets, the utensils were “super-sized”. And, because there were so many people at the table—all were quite literally shoulder to shoulder – the people in both Heaven and hell were unable to raise their utensils to their mouths. The scene in hell was tragic, really. The people there would come pretty close to getting the food into their mouths, but because their neighbors were trying to do likewise, each would cause the other to drop the food from their forks. The harder they might try to feed themselves, the more frustrated and angry they would become. Now, remember, the people in Heaven had the very same dilemma. The forks and spoons were simply too big to raise any food to their mouths. But, in Heaven, the people chose a better path. They picked up food with their forks and simply fed the person across from them. They fed each other and all were happily satisfied. They laughed and told stories and just had a wonderful time of fellowship and enjoyed a wonderful meal together. Sadly, the people in hell only grew angrier and angrier with each passing moment, filled with hate and envy and bitterness for their neighbor who “prevented” them from eating.
Last Friday, January 22, there were an estimated 300,000 people gathered in a relatively small area, the Capitol in Washington, D.C. Often times, that sort of crowd can become easily annoyed. After all, there really wasn’t much room to walk on the street—all were quite literally shoulder to shoulder. Indeed, it took a couple of hours to walk from the gathering on the Green to the steps of the Capitol, a mere 8 blocks distance. Yet, there were no angry shouts about the slow pace, the limited space, the cold weather—rather—all you could hear were people praying the Rosary or perhaps the Divine Mercy Chaplet; you could hear people singing or just having a pleasant conversation; you would hear quite frequently, “Hey, where are you from” or “Pleased to meet you” or “Isn’t it wonderful to see so many here today to say thanks to God for the gift of life, the dignity of the human person, the hope of eternal happiness and so on.” Indeed, the 300,000 were feeding each other – quite literally, passing out water, sharing snacks, acting with kindness and love – essentially feeding one another spiritually. There was a tremendous spirit of peace. And yet, those who oppose life by supporting the culture of death only grow more bitter with each attempt at feeding their own selfish interests. What a shame.