For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday March 14, 2010

Pastor ’s Corner. . .This homily is by Pope Saint Leo the Great [pope, 440-461] for the Fourth Sunday of Lent: “As the Apostle says: He who thinks himself to stand securely, let him take heed lest he fall [I Cor x, 11], no one is sustained by such strength of mind that he can be certain of his own constancy in virtue.
“Let us then, Dearly Beloved, observe these venerable practices of this most acceptable time of Lent, and with anxious care clean the windows of our soul. For however chastely and soberly we live in this mortal life, we shall yet be soiled by some dust in the course of our earthly journey, and the brightness of our soul, formed to God’s image and likeness, is not so remote from the smoke of every vanity, that it will be unclouded by any stain, and need never to be polished. And if this is needed for even the most guarded souls, how much more is it needed for those who pass almost the whole year in carelessness and perhaps in total neglect? Let us with all charity remind such as these not to flatter themselves, because we cannot see into their consciences, since not even the walls of houses, nor remoteness of place, can conceal anything from the eyes of God. And not alone are the thoughts and actions known to Him, but all that shall yet be thought and done [Rom iv, 13].
“Let no one despise the patience of God’s goodness because his own sins go unpunished [Rom ii, 4]; and think that because he has not felt His wrath he has not offended God. The days of grace of this mortal life are not prolonged, nor the time allotted to the foolish of heart before they cross over to the pains of eternal punishment, unless, while justice holds out its hand, they seek for the medicine of penance.
“Let us then take refuge in the ever present mercy of God, and, so that we may with becoming reverence celebrate the Holy Pasch [Easter] of the Lord, let all the faithful seek to make holy their own hearts. Let harshness give place to mildness, let wrath grow gentle, forgive one another your offences, and let him who seeks to be forgiven be not himself a seeker of vengeance. For when we say: Forgive us our debts, as we also forgive our debtors [Mt vi, 12], we bind ourselves in the most enduring bonds unless we fulfill what we profess. And if the most sacred contract of this prayer has not in every respect been fulfilled, let every man now at least examine his conscience, and gain the pardon of his own sins by forgiving those of others.
“For when the Lord says: If you will forgive men their offences, your heavenly Father will forgive you also your offenses [Mt vi, 14; xviii, 35; Lk vi, 37], what he is here asking is close to each one of us: for the sentence of the Judge will depend on the clemency of the suppliant. For the Just and Merciful Receiver of the prayers of men has laid it down, that our own generosity is the measure of His fairness to ourselves; so that He will not treat with strict justness those whom He finds not eager for revenge. And generosity is becoming to kind and gentle souls. Nothing is more fitting than that a man imitate His Maker, and that as best he can he is a doer of the works of God. For when the hungry are fed, the naked clothed, the sick assisted, are not the hands that give but completing the help God gives, and is not the generosity of the giver also a gift from God? “He Who has no need of a helper to perform His works of mercy, so orders His own omnipotence that it is by means of men and women He comes to the aid of the needy. And rightly do we give thanks to God for the doers of that Charity whose works of mercy are seen in His servants. It was because of this the Lord Himself said to His Disciples: So let your light shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your father who is in heaven
[Mt v, 16]; Who with the same Father and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God forever and ever. Amen. [Leo I, The Spirit of Lent, Patrologia Latina, LIV, 281].—Mons. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick. . . Robert Lebeau, Connie Ward, Cheryl Carucci, Jerry Pellegrino, Joan Bachman, Irene Zelinsky, Nicholas Czekanski, Wilfred Baretto, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Mary Moriarty, Carmella Micik, Julie Grant, 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. . .Marjorie L. O’Kane, Lawrence Schmidt Jr., Catherine B. Pullen, Wilhelmina-Belia Falek-Roerhost, Keith Segovia, Frank L. Infante, Dolores A. Deluca Freccia, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Roshah E. DeJean, Paul Reda, Katherine Dziezyc, 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.

American Bishop’s Overseas Collection . . . Please drop your American Bishop’s Overseas Collection envelope into the ONE basket that will be passed at the Offertory. There will only be one collection today.

Confession. . . During Lent, St. John’s will offer Confession each Tuesday evening, from 7:00 – 9:00 P.M. We also continue the usual daily Confessions, Monday through Friday and Sunday, 30 minutes before each Mass. Saturday Confessions are offered 3:00 – 4:00 pm.

Stations of the Cross. . . Fridays during Lent: 4:00 p.m.—English, & 6:00 p.m.—Creole

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. (Note: Audio requires “ActiveX” “which is specifically designed to work with Windows systems (i.e. Internet Explorer). “ActiveX” by Microsoft is not supported on other operating systems such as Apple “Mac OS” or “GNU/Linux.”) 

Trinity Catholic Junior Class. . . will collect old cell phones to earn phone calling cards for our troops abroad. Drop your old cell phones at the Trinity Catholic on Newfield Avenue. Thanks.

The Eagle. . .A new parish publication, edited by our own Dr. Joseph McAleer, will provide a variety of interesting articles each month on theology, the spiritual life, Catholic cultural life and even reviews of local restaurants, bakeries and other neighborhood emporia.
The Eagle is free.

THE SHROUD of TURIN. . . Donald H Nohs will return to St. John’s on March 27th, the Vigil of Palm Sunday, at 7 pm to repeat a special presentation on the Shroud of Turin. Full-sized photographic replicas of the Shroud will be displayed, as well as full-sized replicas of the Crown of Thorns, the Nails, and the Spear that pierced Our Lord’s side. The Presentation will take place in the Church. All are welcome: no charge.

A NIGHT AT THE OPERA. . . Please join us Saturday May 1st at 7:00 pm in the church for a Live Performance featuring Stars of the Metropolitan Opera. Proceeds will benefit the ongoing restoration of our historic church. For ticket and sponsorship information please call 203-324-1553, ext.21 or register on the parish website www.stjohnsstamford.com.
THIS CONCERT WILL NOT BE BROADCAST ON THE PARISH CAMERAS.

Sunday March 7, 2010 $ 12,392.93
Sunday March 8, 2009 $ 12,076.95

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

March 21st Sunday Readings: Is 43: 16-21; Phil 3:8-14; Jn 8:1-11

Grand Concert to Benefit Haiti . . . The Stamford Symphony and the Choir of the Basilica of St. John will present the famous Requiem by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart on Sunday, April 11 at 7:30 PM. A benefit concert for the victims of the earthquake in Haiti, 100% of the proceeds will go to Haitian relief efforts. The concert will be conducted by Maestro Eckart Preu, the chorus prepared by Scott Turkington. While no entrance fee will be required, a suggested donation of $25.00 will go far toward raising needed funds to aid those now suffering in Haiti. Donors wishing to contribute $50.00 or more will be listed in the Donors’ Circle section of the printed program and will have reserved seating. THIS CONCERT WILL NOT BE BROADCAST ON THE PARISH CAMERAS.

Hymns for this weekend . . . (1) 262 (2) 65.

Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass
Mass Ordinary: Missa quarti toni – Tomás Luis de Victoria, 1548-1611.
All are encouraged to sing the Creed at the Noon Mass, which may be found in the hymnal at No. 289. The Creed is sung alternating, at each double bar line, with the choir.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Lætare Ierusalem (Rejoice, O Jerusalem; and gather round, all you who love her; rejoice in gladness, after having been in sorrow; exult and be replenished with the consolation flowing from her motherly bosom. I rejoiced when it was said unto me: “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” [Cf. Isaiah 66:10,11; Psalm 122]); Tract Qui confidunt (Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion; the inhabitants of Jerusalem shall never be shaken. As the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the Lord is round about his people, from this time forth and for evermore. [Psalm 125:1.2]); Offertory Laudate Dominum (Praise the Lord, for he is loving; sing in honour of his name, for he is gracious. He has accomplished whatever he resolved to do in heaven and on earth. [Psalm 135:3,6]; Communion Ierusalem quae ædificatur ut civitas (Jerusalem, built as a city whose parts are bound firmly together! It is there that the tribes go up, the tribes of the Lord, to give thanks unto your name, O Lord. [Psalm 122:3,4].
Offertory Motet: The ways of Zion do mourn – Michael Wise, 1648-1687, Heidi Vanderwal, soprano; Paul Tipton, bass. (The ways of Zion do mourn, because none come to the solemn feasts. All her gates are desolate: her priests sigh, her virgins are afflicted, and she is in bitterness. For these things I weep, mine eye runneth down with water. Her adversaries are the chief, her enemies prosper; for the Lord hath afflicted her. For the multitude of her transgressions, the Lord hath afflicted her. See, O Lord, and consider, for I am become vile. [Lamentations 1: 4, 5, 11]).
Communion Motet: Peccantem me quotidie – Christóbal de Morales, c. 1500-1553 (The fear of death overwhelms me, who sin every day and do not repent: For in hell is no redemption. Have mercy on me. O God spare me!)

Marriage Anniversaries. . . Bishop Lori will celebrate a Mass for couples observing their 15th—50th—plus wedding anniversaries this year on April 25th at 3:00 PM at St. Theresa Church, Trumbull. Please call St. John’s rectory [203-324-1553, ext 21] to register.

Annual Bishop’s Appeal. . .Our Parish goal is $85,000. Please be generous to Bishop Lori.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, March 13
4:00 + John Evelyn Sexton req. Hannah Young
Sunday, March 14
7:30 Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
10:00 +Dorothy Wargo, Birthday Remembrance req. Family
12:00 Special Intentions Francis Kung req. Joseph & Agnes Kung
6:00 +Marion Dod Rehling req. Tom Donahoe
Monday, March 15
8:00 +Valencia & John Lancaster req. Suzanne Kremheller
12:10 +Rosario D’Amico req. Frank, Brother
Tuesday, March 16
8:00 Thanksgiving to God req. Montanise Paulemon
12:10 John Joseph Tarleton 3rd Birthday
Wednesday, March 17
8:00 +John Maloney req. wife-Mary
12:10 +Thomas Nicastro, Sr. req. Bea & John Centonze
Thursday, March 18
8:00 +Mr. Constantin Gaspard, Fanelia Jean-Pierre & Family req. Nieces & Nephews
12:10 Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.
Friday, March 19
8:00 Special Intentions Anna Margarita Ucero, Birthday
12:10 +Stephen, Irene, Nicholas Churley req. Mary Churley
Saturday, March 20
8:00 Souls in Purgatory
12:10 +Mr. & Mrs. Naissance Jean-Guillaume and Family req. Grand Children

Holy Name Society . . . For the men of the parish, meets Fridays in the Rectory, 7-7:50 a.m. for coffee, Eucharistic adoration & Benediction. All men of the parish are welcome. We finish in time for 8 am Mass. Just walk in.

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

Moms & Tots . . . Moms and their kids meets each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30 a.m. Please join us.

Religious Education. . . Sundays at 8:30 a.m. Sunday Mass attendance is a duty for all students and Catholic parents.

Convert class [RCIA]. . .Tuesday Evenings 7:30 pm—8:30 pm in the rectory. Call Fr. Walsh, ext. 14.

Pray to end legalized abortion . . . Wednesdays, 7-10:30a.m., Stamford’s Planned Parenthood, 1039 East Main St.

St. Dominic Savio Society. . . . For the spiritual formation of young men from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert 203-324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, please contact Suzanna Bosthwick, 203-554-2004.

The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory.

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

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory All are welcome.

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

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

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

St. John’s in the advocate:
150 years ago, or so:
March 18, 1864: “Yesterday was St. Patrick’s day, and, contrary to the general rule, the weather was fine in the morning. Mass was celebrated and a sermon preached by Rev. Father O’Neil in the Roman Catholic Church. A full congregation was in attendance.”

100 years ago, or so:
March 17, 1910: FAITH OF ST. PATRICK. Its Influence on Catholic Church in America. Father Tierney’s Lecture. “Rev. John J. Tierney of Brooklyn spoke last evening, in St. John’s R. C. Church, to an audience that taxed its seating capacity. His subject was St. Patrick and his religion, the text being taken from Romans 1:8: “I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.” Father Tierney spoke of the great and good work of St. Patrick in establishing monasteries, convents, schools, etc. throughout Ireland, which he accomplished without any great opposition. Then followed a period of prosperity and peace, which was broken by the invasion by the Danes. This invasion terminated in the glory of Ireland and the defeat and humiliation of the Danes. When the Irish emigrants came to America, they had in their hearts the old faith taught by St. Patrick. But for this, the American Catholic Church would not be what it is today. The foundation as well as the superstructure of the American Church was well built by the Irish emigrant. Continuing, Father Tierney spoke of his own love for his native land. He recounted an incident that happened when he was making a visit to the Emerald Isle, and, catching sight of the green hills, all unmindful of the crowd of passengers on the boat, he leaped up, and, in the exuberance of his spirits, shouted: “Oh Ireland, ye darling! The top of the morning to you”.”

50 years ago, or so:
March 18, 1960: Sodality To Sponsor Talks On Vocations At Tea On Sunday. “A Vocation Tea sponsored by the Senior Sodality of the Blessed Virgin Mary, will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday at St. John’s School hall. Speakers will include the Rt. Rev. Msgr. Nicholas P. Coleman, P.A.V.F, pastor of St. John’s Church; Rev. Vincent P. Cleary, assistant pastor; and two former parishioners, Sister Maureen Reardon and Sister Therese Mary from the Sisters of Mercy Novitiate in Madison. The program will be opened by St. John’s School Glee Club, under the direction of Sister Mary Matthew. The Sodality has invited girls who are interested in the topic of vocations to attend.”

The Living Temple
-Fr. Terry Walsh
In the Book of Revelation, St. John reveals the Vision of Heaven that he was granted by God for our sake. And during the course of His beautiful description of the Heavenly Jerusalem, John speaks so eloquently about the “living water.” He said, “I saw no Temple in the city, for its Temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb…Then he showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the Throne of God and of the Lamb….also, on either side of the river, the Tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit…”(Rev. 21:22ff).
Jesus, of course, is the Lamb of God – He is the Temple. We become – as it were – “living stones” in Him, called to share in the glory of Divine Life. The “water of life” flowing through the Heavenly City is the love of God: the purpose of our existence is to share in that love! Those who respond to His call and open their hearts to God in this earthly journey receive these living waters sacramentally in “Spirit and in Truth” and, some day, perpetually in Heaven. This is all made possible through the One Perfect Sacrifice of Jesus upon the Tree of Life, that is, the Cross. St. Paul reminds us of the cost: “We boast in hope of the glory of God…and Hope does not disappoint – because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” Prayer is the key. The Psalmist cries out: “Oh that today you would hear His voice, harden not your hearts!” But, are we listening? Or are we so caught up in worldly cares and concerns that are hearts have become attached to this world and have actually become deaf to the whispers of the Holy Spirit? The story about the woman at the well (John, chapter 4) helps illustrate the point. She was lost. She seemed so worn out, even bitter. Perhaps, over time, she had become accustomed to a gradual hardening of the heart. She had lost her true identity and took on a sort of defensive posture – imbued with “the spirit of world.” The garden of her soul had become a barren, dusty patch. And although she stood right next to ‘the well of living water,’ Jesus Christ, she did not recognize Him. How often our Lord stands beside us each day. Have we likewise become spiritually deaf to His beckoning? Do we truly recognize Him? Or, have our spiritual wounds turned off the faucet of grace?
When worldly concerns govern our hearts, our true identity becomes hazy – even to the point where we don’t recognize the call to divine life. Like the Samaritan woman, our Lord thirsts for our return to Him. He waits for our humble prayer, the fruit of a ‘repentant spirit.’ “Lord, give me a drink. Lord, heal me.” Lord, give me the grace to pray better and to see the way of living you expect from me. Water the ‘garden of my soul’ with the living waters gushing from your wounded side. Fill me with your love – that I may worship you ‘in Spirit and in Truth’ and so recognize your Presence in my soul. It all begins at the door of confession. What are we holding on to in our souls? What are we carrying in the Bucket we call our heart? What faults and failings – what sins? Are we, like the Samaritan woman, willing to hand them over to God and leave that worldly bucket at His feet that He may empty it through Sacramental Confession? Then, we’ll be free to take up the New Bucket – the one filled with living water.
“If today you hear His voice, harden not your hearts!” The Scriptures caution us: “Do not grieve the Holy Spirit” – that is – don’t neglect reconciliation with God. Ask for forgiveness. Humbly crack open the hard exterior shell and allow true contrition to flow out – and thus enable the healing balm of the Holy Spirit to water your hearts and so direct your souls into the Living Temple.