For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday October 31, 2010
Pastor’s Corner. . . The Solemnity of All Saints on November 1st and All Souls Day on November 2nd call to mind an aspect of the reality of the Church of which many people are unaware: The Catholic Church isn’t a humanly created institution; established personally by Our Lord when He commissioned the Twelve Apostles, it is the living Body of Christ which reaches beyond time: Christ is the Head, we—both the baptized living and dead—are the members, through which Our Lord works to save everyone. As you can read in the New Testament, Our Lord created His Church with His Apostles as the living foundation. The image is clear in the Book of the Apocalypse: “The angel said to me, ’Come and I will show you the bride that the Lamb has married.’ He. . . Showed me Jerusalem, the holy city, coming down from God out of heaven. . . The City stood on twelve foundation stones, each one of which bore the name of one of the twelve apostles of the Lamb” [Apoc 1:10-14]. Saint Paul continues the image: “You are part of a building that has the apostles and prophets for its foundations, and Christ Jesus himself for its main cornerstone [Eph 2:20]. The Church personally established by Our Lord, which has been called “Catholic” since the end of the first century, while it includes human beings among its members, is a living creation of God, with Jesus literally as its head, and we, literally as its members, just like your arms and legs and eyes are members of your own body. There is an intimate relationship between Our Lord and all who are baptized with everyone else who has been baptized, and whoever will be baptized. That relationship springs from our sharing in the very life of Jesus through Baptism and the Sacrament of His Body and Blood, the Eucharist, or Holy Communion, which we are privileged to receive during Mass. Whenever we attend Mass, all the saints and angels, and God Himself, is present with us—not as an idea or a memory, but actually. All Saints Day and All Souls Day call to our minds that deeper reality of our unity in Christ through His Catholic Church.
All Saints Day [Nov 1] recalls the innumerable men, women, and children who led lives of heroic virtue and great holiness, who tried to imitate Jesus in their daily lives, and succeeded. These Saints pray for us to Our Lord; as members of the Church, they continue to practice charity from Heaven in our regard. All Souls Day [Nov 2] calls to mind those innumerable men, women, and children who have died, but whose lives were less than perfect imitations of Jesus’. They, hopefully, are in Purgatory, being purged of the effects of their sins. We remember them in a particular way, as our act of charity, praying for them, as members of the Church. Not everyone is in Heaven: some are in Purgatory, being purified; some are in Hell. The popular fallacy is that everyone goes to Heaven simply because we exist. Not so, at least not according to Our Lord’s revelation in Scripture and the Church’s consistent teachings. If we live without Christ now, or live in a manner contrary to Christ, why would we want or expect to be with Him forever in Heaven?
This week we recall those Saints who loved Christ so much that they formed their daily lives around Him, and those others who desired to live perfect lives, but who were less than perfect because of human weakness and sin. These are days of great hope, because God’s mercy is stronger than our sins; stronger than the power of Satan and death. As a sign of that, the Church offers special graces for the Souls in Purgatory. Purgatory is the name given by the Church to the final purification of the elect, who led less than perfect lives, but not mortally sinful lives [I Cor 3:15; I Pet 1:7]. As seen in Scripture, this is an ancient belief, joined to that equally ancient practice of praying for the dead [2 Macc 12:46]. If there were no hope of salvation after death, no chance of purification after death, why are there so many instances in Scripture of people praying for the dead? By our faith, made manifest by our prayers, acts of charity, and proper intention, united with the Church as the Body of Christ, we can gain a Plenary Indulgence for deceased members of our families or friends, and it costs nothing. A Plenary Indulgence is the remission before God of the temporal punishment due for sins that had been forgiven by Confession. Sin has a lasting effect on us, which can be cleansed only through penance. Think of sin as the immoral equivalent of fast and greasy food: you can stop eating it, but a nasty residue called cholesterol remains. Sin is like that: even after we stop sinning, there is a type of “spiritual cholesterol” that remains. It can be cleansed only through penance, now or in Purgatory—if you make it that far after death! Hopefully, we can do these penances prior to our death; sometimes not.
That is where the Church comes in: The Church, established by Our Lord as the minister of Redemption, authoritatively dispenses and applies to those in need the treasury of graces won by Christ and His Saints. One Indulgence can be had each day from November 1st through the 8th, and each can be applied by us to one of the faithful departed per day. All we have to do is this: 1) go to Confession at least once during that week, which implies a true repentance and conversion from sin; and receive Holy Communion on the day(s) you wish the Indulgence; 2) visit any cemetery; 3) and pray—one Hail Mary and one Our Father for the intention of the Pope; 4) if you can’t visit a cemetery, then visit any Catholic church, fulfilling the requirements 1 and 3, and also recite the Apostles’ Creed. This is Christ’s mercy through His Church, through the power of the Keys of Heaven, Our Lord gave to Saint Peter [Matt 16: 17-19]. We are asked to have faith in the Church established by Christ and to demonstrate that faith through charity by doing these simple spiritual tasks. Let us be mindful of the goodness of Our Lord, pray to the Saints for their intercession as our friends in Heaven, and pray for the faithful departed that we might one day see them and the God who loves us in Heaven. — Msgr. DiGiovanni
Please pray for the sick. . . Corrie Evans, Margie Joyce, Joseph J. Lasko, Shirly Mailhot, Roledonne Samedi, Maurice Babe Ruggiero, Marlene Stern, Megan Bobroske, Dermott McMahon, Isabella Baptiste, Aileen Bainton, Jamie Chapin, Angela Bonneau, Emily Turturino, George Szele, Sr., Robert Lebeau, Connie Ward, Cheryl Carucci, Joan Bachman, Nicholas Czekanski, Wilfred Baretto, Haitian Earthquake Victims.
Please pray for those who have recently died. . . Shirley Piacenza, Sheila Lockhart, James Andersen, Domineco Gentile, Alma Vota, Ben DeSalvo, Sue Richard, June Lambiase, Robert D’Aquila, Kevin Sutton, Catherine McVey Hanley Smith, Nichole Philips, Jane Lubin, Mary Moriarty, Katie Fontneau, Achille Lamontagne, Rosemarie Gaffney.
The Solemnity of All Saints. . .Monday, November 1st, Is Not a Holy Day of Obligation. There will be the regular daily Mass schedule.
All Souls Day. . .Tuesday, November 2nd, the commemoration of all the faithfully departed souls, will have the regular daily Mass schedule: 8 a.m. & 12:10 p.m.
Monday Evening Holy Hour . . .Monday nights 7-8:00 pm for Eucharistic Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and Holy Rosary in the church, Next Hour: November 1st at 7 pm.
Friday Eucharistic Adoration . . .will be CANCELLED until Christmas due to the church painting.
Saint Peter Votive Lights Memorial. . .The left votive is in memory of the deceased members of the Lockhart families req. Harriet Lockhart. The right votive is in memory of Sheila Lockhart req. Harriet Lockhart.
Our Lady’s Altar Votive Light Memorial. . . Special intentions Ann & Jo.
Protectress of Rome Votive Light Memorial . . .Special intentions Abanes family.
Memorial Votive Lights. . . The two votive lights at the shrine of Saint Peter, the one before the icon of Mary Protectress of the Roman People, may be memorialized each week for the intention of a loved one, or for the repose of a deceased loved one for a donation of $20.00 per candle, per week. The memorials will be published in the bulletin. Please call Cindy at ext. 21, between 9AM—1:30PM.
Religious Education. . . Classes have begun. For those not yet registered, you may register On-Line at the St. John’s Website, www.stjohnsstamford.com, or call the rectory, and speak with Cindy, 203-324-1553 x21. Classes are on Sundays at 8:30 sharp. Please be on time.
Saint Monica Patristic Institute. . . Meets Wednesdays at 7:30pm in the Rectory: Our November topic: Advent & Christmas homilies by St. Augustine. We will meet November 3, 10 & 17th. All are welcome.
Latin Reading Group. . .Wednesdays at 6:15 pm in the Rectory.
Biblical Greek Study Group. . .Thursday at 6:30 pm in the Rectory: open only to those with a reading ability in Biblical Greek.
R.C.I.A. classes. . . NO CLASS on Tuesday, November 2nd. Normally meets in the Rectory on Tuesday nights from 7:30pm to 8:30pm.
Sunday October 24, 2010 $ 11,238.40
Sunday October 25, 2009 $ 11,698.08
“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta
November 7th Sunday Readings: 2 Mc 7:1-2, 9-14; 2 Thes 2:16-3:5; Lk 20:27-38 or Lk 20:27, 34-38.
Home Schooling Families. . . A group for home schooling families meets one Tuesday each month. All ages are welcome. Please contact Julianne DeMarco at 203-966-3641, firstname.lastname@example.org or Janet Lancaster at 203-637-3301, email@example.com.
Foundation Grants. . . We are looking for volunteers to help write grant proposals to various foundations to help finance new programs at the Basilica. Anyone with experience writing grant proposals, and interested in volunteering their time and effort, please call Monsignor.
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. Now compatible with Apple “Mac OS” as well as Microsoft Windows PCs.
Latin Mass. . . Due to the painting of the side chapels, the Latin Mass in the Extraordinary Form will be postponed here at Saint John’s until the New Year. HOWEVER, Fr. LaPastina will offer the Latin mass each Tuesday’s at 9:30 a.m. in the side chapel at Saint Gabriel Parish on Newfield Avenue. The next Latin Mass will be Tuesday, Nov. 9th at St. Gabriel’s.
Basilica Meeting. . . As we prepare to open our Basilica Office, there will be a meeting of the Grant Writers: November 1st at 7:30 pm in the rectory.
Trinity Catholic Mass. . .The annual Memorial Mass for the deceased graduates, faculty, and staff of Stamford Catholic / Trinity Catholic High School will take place on Thursday,
November 4, 2010 at 7:30 pm in the school auditorium. All are welcomed to attend. Please call the school (203) 322-3401 if you plan to attend.
Parish Finance Council Meeting. . .Thursday, November 11th at 7:30 pm in the rectory.
Parish Council Meeting. . . Friday, November 12th at 7:30 pm in the rectory.
Job Seekers. . . Meets the 4th Monday of each month in the rectory at 7:30 pm: all are welcome. Topics include job interviewing, writing of resumes, networking and job seeking strategies. The group is led by Melanie Szlucha’s company, Red Inc., please see: www.redinc.biz.
St. Anne’s Society . . . will meet next on Sunday, November 14th. We will begin with Adoration at 5pm and then move to the Church Hall for a Potluck dinner and a talk. All are welcome to attend. Please bring a hot dish, salad or dessert so all can join in.
Bible Study. . .Meets each Thursday at 7 p.m. in the rectory. This year’s study includes the Book of Revelation and Acts of the Apostles. See Schedule of Events on the Parish Website for dates.
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, October 30
4:00 Thanksgiving to St. Jude req. Freccia Family
Sunday, October 31
7:30 +John Castellano req. the Giannitti Family
10:00 +William Morris req. Al & Jo Mitchell
12:00 +William Morris req. Marchetti Family
6:00 +Mrs. Germaine Merisier req. Daughter
Monday, November 1
8:00 Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
12:10 Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
Tuesday, November 2
8:00 Souls in Purgatory
12:10 Souls in Purgatory
Wednesday, November 3
8:00 +Margaret M. Timon req. Thomas H. Timon
12:10 +Julia Rusinak req. Mary Churley
Thursday, November 4
8:00 +Members of the Do Family req. Thang Nguyen
12:10 +Emma Siciliano req. Marchetti Family
Friday, November 5
8:00 +Members of the Nguyen Family req. Thang Nguyen
12:10 +Vera Dandry req. Laura Pascale
Saturday, November 6
8:00 Forgotten Souls in Purgatory req. Cecilia Carpio
12:10 In honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary req. Ferry G.
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 the 8am Mass.
The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society . . .meets Saturdays in the rectory at 9:30 a.m.
Moms & Tots . . . Moms and their kids meets in parish hall each first Tuesday of every month at 10:00 a.m.
St. Anne Society . . .A family society which meets four times a year on Sundays at 5:00 p.m. with prayer, supper, and a lecture in the church hall. Our next meeting will be Sunday, November 14th.
Pray to end legalized abortion . . . Weds, 7-10:30a.m., Stamford’s Planned Parenthood, 1039 East Main St.
St. Dominic Savio Society. . .For the spiritual formation of young men, 8th – 12th grades. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert 203-324-1553 ext. 22.
St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies, 8th-12th grades. Questions, contact Beth Carpanzano at 203-975-0074.
Bible Study…Meets each Thursday at 7 p.m. in the rectory. This year’s study includes the Book of Revelation and Acts of the Apostles. See the Schedule of Events on the Parish Website for dates.
The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesday evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory.
The Legion of Mary. . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the parish hall. All are welcome.
St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Meets Wednesday evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory:
Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets Thursday evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory: open only to those with a reading ability in Biblical Greek.
Coffee Hour. . . After the 10:00 a.m. Mass in the Monsignor Nagle Parish Hall. All are welcome.
St. John’s in The ADVOCATE:
120 years ago, or so:
Nov. 7, 1890: St. John’s R.C. Church Matters. “The fence in front of the rectory received a fresh coat of paint early this week. The usual examination in the parochial school lasted nearly all of the present week. This Friday evening there will be the benediction of the blessed sacrament in St. John’s church at 7:30 o’clock. On November 2nd, May O’Neill was married in the church to John Walsh. The officiating clergyman was Father Rogers. The quarterly conference of this R.C. diocese was held this week in Hartford. The pastors attended on Tuesday and the assistant pastors on Thursday. The feast of All Souls, in commemoration of the departed, was celebrated on Monday last, and the masses at 7 and 8 o’clock were largely attended.”
75 years ago, or so:
Nov. 3, 1936: Children of Mary Hear Advantages of Catholic Library: “The Children of Mary Sodality of St. John’s Church held its monthly meeting Sunday afternoon. Marion McRedmond presided. Rev. N.P. Coleman spoke to the girls and introduced Rev. Edward Rosenberger of St. Mary’s parish, who gave an instructive and interesting talk on the advantages of the Catholic Library in Stamford. The library, situated in the K of C Building, Elm St., is open to all, and has a wide choice of books. Father Rosenberger stressed the point of reading for the purpose of recreation, inspiration and information..”
35 years ago, or so:
Nov. 3, 1974: Bell St. Parking Garage: “The current hassle over the proposed Bell St. parking garage is one that grows right from the heart of Stamford’s renewal problems. Its ingredients include all the complex machinery of the environmental, financial and of course, political, aspects of the city’s rebuilding effort. At this writing, Mayor Fred Lenz was still debating whether or not to unleash a last-minute legal attack to halt construction of the $2.7 million project. Most of those close to the debate seriously doubted that such an extreme measure would be taken, but even to consider it is serious business. The contract is let, and to undercut construction at this point undoubtedly spawn a legal counterattack. Opponents, including the administration and the leaders of St. John’s Church on Atlantic St., say there has not been sufficient study of the full environmental impact the garage will have.”
Light in the Midst of Darkness -Fr. Terry Walsh
Each November, as the daylight hours begin to diminish, the Church’s Liturgical year also begins to draw to a close. The darker days remind us of our own mortality and cause us to reflect on just how well we are using the time our Lord has so graciously given each of us. As we approach the Church New Year, the 1st Sunday of Advent, which is just around the corner, it is a good time to reflect on the state of our Spiritual Journey and have a bit of time to consider some possible resolutions. Has there been progress over these past 12 months in the areas of prayer, of greater understanding of the faith, and of a deeper, fully appreciation of the blessings and challenges that are meant to draw us closer to God? What “New Year’s Resolutions” might be considered to make greater progress beginning on the First Sunday of Advent? Perhaps consider the foundation stones in your prayer life. Are you opening your Bible at home each day – even for just a few minutes – and allowing God to speak to you. What a treasure! As we grow in our knowledge of God by reading and meditating upon the Word, we grow in our understanding of his love for us and begin to see more clearly how we ought to respond to that love. Understanding will come if we put forth the effort. It is a way of seeking God and Jesus promised, “Seek and you shall find.” The daily Rosary is another powerful devotion to solidify the foundation of daily prayer, even if you begin that devotion with one simple Mystery each day. Each of the 20 mysteries is a meditation on our Lord. Our Blessed Mother leads us to Him. Indeed, as we walk with Her, we begin to understand Her relationship with our Lord more clearly. She is nearest Him in His joy and sorrow. She is nearest Him in His glory. Our Spiritual Mother longs to teach us how to love Her Son more and more faithfully and through the Devotion of the Holy Rosary we gain wonderful insights and graces into our Lord’s life, death, and Resurrection.
What a wonderful foundation of prayer: Scripture and Rosary. Then, when talking with God about all the circumstances and details of our daily lives, we’ll begin to understand our lives in Light of His. And the graces He wants to pour into our hearts will be more abundant, more efficacious, simply because our prayer life will have opened our hearts wider to receive Him and consequently, we will walk more faithfully with Him.
As the November days grow darker, our hearts should continue to grow in the Light. Consider the Supernatural Virtue of Hope. It was infused in our souls at Baptism – a hope that has grown more resilient through the graces received through faithfully living out the dignity of our respective Christian vocations with an ever deepening desire to dwell in the Light of Christ as the Saints in Heaven already enjoy. Our hope is buoyed by the confidence that we are in fact called to share in that Light and that those who have gone before us are actually interceding for us – praying for us – today. Likewise, we who continue to “fight the good fight” in the Church on earth should be mindful of those who are on their way to Heaven but look for our prayerful support to speed their journey through Purgatory. We are all part of One Body, Jesus Christ, and our prayers for the dead have true efficacy. We must pray for each other. Purgatory is a great gift. The greatest attribute of God is His Mercy! Purgatory is a shining example of that Mercy. It is a state of purification so that a soul may be made worthy to enter the perfect holiness of Eternal Beatitude – the Brilliant, Radiant Light of Christ. Only Holy souls may enter there and those that do are assured of going to Heaven.
In addition to helping the holy souls who are in Purgatory through prayer, almsgiving, indulgences, and various works of penance, we may also gain the treasures of Indulgences for ourselves in such abundance that upon our own death, we may be taken straight up to Heaven. Our Lord is infinitely generous.
These dim days of November do not darken our hearts when we reflect on the love and mercy of our generous Redeemer. As we are filled with the Light of Christ, we will grow in understanding of our Christian Dignity and the Life of Holiness each of us is called to live. We will draw closer to Him through the grace of the Sacraments and He will offer us many opportunities to demonstrate our love for Him as we pray for one another, beginning with those who have gone before us.