For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday June 12, 2011
Pastor’s Corner. . . In ancient Israel, it was understood that with the coming of the Messiah, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit would take place, and Israel would be purified of its sins [Num 11:29; Is 59: 21]. With the coming of John the Baptist and Our Lord, there occurred a reawakening of this hope, which had become limited to views of the Messiah as one who would free Israel from the Roman Empire. With the coming of Our Lord, and through His death, resurrection and ascension, the relationship of Israel and of all creation with God is restored, and blessings are now to be had. Of these, the two greatest spoken of are the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38-40).
The Apostles, through Saint Peter, after having received the Holy Spirit on that first Pentecost, preach to the assembled Jews and foreigners in Jerusalem. The hallmark of this earliest teaching is not condemnation of those who killed Jesus—as would have been expected under the usual “Eye for an eye” practice of legitimized vengeance. Rather, Peter tells his hearers that all may receive the benefits of the Savior if they repent of their sins—even of having killed Jesus, Himself—receive Jesus’ forgiveness, and be baptized into the community of the saved: the Church established by Christ, Himself, on the Apostles. The outpouring the Holy Spirit and the forgiveness of sins are the two most potent of gifts given by Christ and the Eternal Father to all those who come to the Church.
As we read in the Acts of the Apostles (11:26), that the disciples or believers of Jesus were first called “Christians”, receiving that name in the city of Antioch, in what is today’s Syria. Yet, during the subsequent years, various groups appeared, separated from the Apostles, who called themselves Christians, while teaching the wildest and strangest of beliefs that had nothing to do with Christ or His Church. The hallmark of these groups was, besides their odd teachings or demands, was that each group offered salvation on to a few people: they were exclusive clubs, as it were, offering membership only to those of a specific tribe, group, city or nation. Everyone else had no chance of salvation, at lest according to their founders. Gnostics, Judaizers, Novatians, Docetists and Nicolaitians, to name only a few. These were small groups who denied that God had become Incarnate, or that He actually had died on the Cross, or protested that He never had been raised from the dead, or that salvation came only to a few enlightened. Most of the world has forgotten these people and their beliefs (except for historians and antiquarians!). Yet, they threatened the salvation of many because they taught false doctrines that led many astray from the true Christ and His Church.
It was also in the city of Antioch, just a few decades after the Church was called “Christian” that it received another name—from its bishop. Saint Ignatius of Antioch was a disciple of Saint Peter. After Saint Peter began the Church in Antioch, he appointed Ignatius to head the community there, and ordained him a bishop. By the end of the first century, Ignatius was a very old man, and he was arrested during one of the Roman imperial persecutions, dragged in chains across Asia Minor, thrown onto a ship and brought to Rome where, in 107 a.d., he was thrown to the lions in the Colisseum in Rome. As he was being dragged to Rome in chains, he wrote a series of letters to the Church in the various towns and cities he passed by. Famous towns such as Magnesia, Smyrna, Ephesus, Trallia and Rome—all but the last no longer exist. Writing to the Church in Smyrna, he instructed them to beware of the false groups mentioned above, and told them: “You must all follow the lead of the bishop, as Jesus Christ followed that of the Father; follow the priests (presbyters, in Greek) as you would the Apostles; reverence the deacons as you would God’s commandment. Let no one do anything touching the Church, apart from the bishop. Let that celebration of the Eucharist be considered valid which is held under the bishop or anyone to whom he has committed it. Where the bishop appears, there let the people be, just as where Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church” (Letter to the Smyrnians,8).
Which is the Church of Christ? Saint Ignatius was clear: it is Katholikos: Catholic, in Greek, which means Universal. It is unlike those sects or heretical religious groups claiming to be Christian, but only found in one or two cities; applied only to small groups; or were established by a government or king. They were local creations, offering membership only to a few people. The authentic Church founded by Christ on the Apostles, and empowered by the Pentecost outpouring of the Holy Spirit with the power to forgive sins, is the one to be found in every city in every nation, around the globe, offering salvation to everyone and anyone who will repent of sins and have faith in Our Lord. Even before the Emperor Constantine legalized the Catholic Church in the early 4th century, the Church of Christ could be found in every city of the Empire—despite the repeated imperial efforts to destroy the Church by legalized persecutions.
On this great feast of Pentecost, let us thank Our Lord for the gift of our Catholic Faith: the faith of the Apostles, which has been handed on in an unbroken chain from Christ, to the Twelve, to their successors, the popes and bishops in communion with them. Let us live worthily of the gifts we have all received through the Sacraments, and, in particular, those seven gifts of the Holy Spirit we received at our Confirmation—the same gifts the Apostles and the Mother of God received on that first Pentecost. Through these spiritual gifts that come to us through the Sacraments instituted by Christ in His Catholic Church, and through His revelation in Scripture and the living Tradition of the Church, we should daily turn from sin, embrace and imitate Our Lord in virtue, grow in knowledge and grace of Him who loves us. For Jesus is intimately united with us through His Church—He is the Head and we the body—and through that communion with Him and His saints, we are headed for eternal life, if only we try a little to imitate Him, and let Our Lord do the rest.
Please pray for the sick. . . Titina Tarantino, Richard Ridge, Mario Stano, Mark Ferris, Marie Maddox, Barbara Schueger, Bernadette Jachimczyk, Terry Cooke, Stacey, Megan Bobroske, Connie Ward, Corrine Mattson, Billy Therriault, Tana Sibilio, Kathleen Nichols, Millie Maida, Joseph Hlavaty, Rev. Carlos Antonio Mesa, Corrie Evans, Shirly Mailhot, Roledonne Samedi.
Please pray for those who have recently died. . . Adelaide Velanzano, Aura Piedra, Jeanne & Andy Robustelli, Mary Ferrara, Genoeffa Melchionno, Cynthia Callahan, Teresa Angelini, Natale Sposato, Joseph George Terenzio, Elizabeth Gross, Natalie Ryan, Soreida Mendez, Dr. Elaine Parliman, Jack Mahan, Pat Civitillo, Dr. Erlman, Robert Monahan, Asst. Police Chief Francis Cronin, Babe Ruggiero, Mrs. Schuyler-Jones, Theodore Brutus, E. Gaynor Brennan, Jr., Mother Lillian Cairo, P.O.S.C., Dr. Raymond Gabriele, Harold John Frost, Dorothy Davis, William Loughlin, Courtney Harry.
Easter Duty. . . Each Catholic is obliged to receive Holy Communion at least once yearly, during the Easter Season (Easter, April 24—Pentecost, June 12). One should also go to Confession at least once yearly, as well, to worthily receive the Body and Blood of Our Lord.
Monday Evening Holy Hour . . . Monday nights 7-8:00 pm for Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and Holy Rosary in the church. Next Hour: June 13th at 7 p.m.
The Civil War, Reconstruction and Construction: St. John’s, 1861-1886:
This parish historic exhibit traces the contribution of Saint John’s parishioners during the Civil War, displaying Civil War artifacts from both the Stamford Historical Society and the parish archives; the development of Catholic life in Stamford following the War; and the work of one of our parishioners, John Ennis, Union Army veteran, architect and builder of the upper church dedicated on May 30, 1886. This exhibit will be offered in the Rectory through July 31st:
Mondays-Fridays, 9:00 am. until 4:30 pm: just ring the bell;
Saturdays and Sundays BY appointment:
Please call the rectory (324-1553, ext 11 or 21).
School groups, seniors’ groups and all are welcome. There is no charge.
Repainting the Church. . . Currently we have $526,621.00 pledged. I ask everyone’s help in this. The three parish priests are donating $1,000.00 each. If each individual or household would contribute $1,000, payable over 10 months, we’ll have it. Look at it this way: —that’s $100. per month, or $25. per week, or $3.57 per day. Please lend us a hand.
Annual Bishop’s Appeal. . . Our parish goal to support the charitable and educational works of the diocese is $85,000. Currently we have $52,252.00 collected. Please help our Bishop.
Brides in 2012. . . Remember, when planning of your wedding at St. John’s, that the church interior will be covered in scaffolding beginning in October: the sanctuary to the aisle crossing until Christmas; from the aisle crossing to the front door through early June 2012.
Latin Reading Group. . .Wednesdays: 6:15 pm in the Rectory (reading ability required).
Saint Monica Patristic Institute. . . Will not meet during the summer. See you in September.
Hebrew Beginners’ Grammar Class. . .Thursdays: 5:30 pm in the Rectory.
Biblical Greek Study Group. . .Thursdays: 6:30 pm in the Rectory (reading ability required).
Sunday June 5, 2011 $ 13,998.70
Sunday June 6, 2010 $ 13,568.70
“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta
June 19th Sunday Readings: Ex 34:4b-6, 8-9; 2 Cor 13:11-13; Jn 3:16-18.
Latin Mass. . . Fr. Cyprian LaPastina will offer the Latin Mass in the Extraordinary Form each Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. here at Saint John’s; the next Mass is Tuesday, June 14th.
Seminarian. . . I am delighted to welcome Carl McIntosh, a seminarian of the Diocese of Bridgeport, who will be working with us at the parish through the summer.
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.
Electronic Giving – Offertory Donations Made Easy…Consider using your credit card to make your weekly or monthly donation to St. John’s. Easier for you, and less costly for the parish than the
printing and mailing of weekly envelopes, credit card giving automatically sends your weekly offering to the Basilica of St. John’s. Call the parish secretary (324-1553, ext. 21).
Papal Blessings. . . The Basilica now can provide papal blessings for parishioners. Please call the parish office for further information and speak with Cindy (203-324-1553, ext. 21).
Memorial Votive Lights . . . The two votive lights at the shrine of Saint Peter, and 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 203-324-1553, ext. 21.
Home Schooling Families. . . A group for home schooling families meets monthly on Tuesday. All ages are welcome. Please contact Julianne DeMarco at 203-966-3641, email@example.com, or Janet Lancaster at 203-637-3301, firstname.lastname@example.org.
St. John’s 20’s and 30’s “The Flock”….our new young adult group, offers social and community service activities. Meetings on the 2nd Thursday of each month in the rectory. Doors open at 7:00 PM. (More info: Deirdre.Garrahan@gmail.com).
Handy Man. . . Need a truck for hire, clean-ups or dump runs, and someone to do the work? Call James Pipicelli, a member of the parish Holy Name Society: 203-550-4285.
Job Seekers . . . Meets the 4th Monday of each month in the rectory at 7:30pm: all are welcome. There is no charge for these services. The group is led by Melanie Szlucha whose company, Red Inc., is a leader in helping find jobs. For more info, see: www.redinc.biz or call her at 203-866-1606. Next meeting: Monday June 27th.
Corpus Christi at Saint Gabriel. . . Solemn High Mass in Latin according to the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite will be celebrated in honor of the Feast of Corpus Christi at Saint Gabriel Church on Newfield Avenue on Thursday, June 23rd at 7:30 in the evening. At the end of Mass a candlelight Eucharistic procession will follow outside. The evening will conclude with a light reception. All are welcome!
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, June 11
4:00 +John and Evelyn Sexton req. Hannah Sexton Young
Sunday, June 12
7:30 Special Intentions Father Audette req. Millie Terenzio
8:30 +Brigida Serpa req. Mr. and Mrs. Darrell Ingram
10:00 +Mary Louise Deluca req. Francis M. Deluca and Family
12:00 Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.
5:00 +Louise and Arthur Thiel req. Andrew and Valerie McAleer
6:00 +Robert Monahan req. Michael Guarnieri
Monday, June 13
8:00 +Rosanne Fagio req. her Uncle Frank
12:10 St. Anthony of Padua: In Thanksgiving for Favors Received
Tuesday, June 14
8:00 +John Maloney req. wife Mary
12:10 +Marion Santarsiero Giordano and her son Richard Santarsiero req. Rosemary Ferris & Family
Wednesday, June 15
8:00 Joseph Curtis req. Mary Maloney
12:10 St. John’s Priests req. St. John’s Home School Group
Thursday, June 16
8:00 +St. Padre Pio: Canonized 9 years req. Marion Morris and Family
12:10 +Bill Greaney req. Joseph Silva
Friday June 17
8:00 +Edith, Gordon and Valerie Sylander req. Alison and Kevin Tosches
12:10 Andrew Warren Blackson req. Joan Beirne
Saturday, June 18
8:00 +Hope and Joseph McAleer req. The McAleer Family
12:10 +Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Shawinsky req. Mr. and Mrs. Darrell Ingram
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.
Moms & Tots . . . Moms and their kids meets in the Church each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30a.m.
St. Anne’s Society . . .A family society which meets four times a year on Sundays after the 5pm mass, with Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament and prayer, supper, and a lecture in the church hall.
Pray to end Legalized Abortion . . . Wednesdays, 7-10:30a.m., Stamford’s Planned Parenthood, 1039 East Main St.
St. Dominic Savio & St. Maria Goretti Society Youth group will be having a field trip to the Statue of Liberty Saturday June 18th at 9:00 a.m. For more Info, contact Ferry Galbert 203-324-1553 ext. 22 or Beth Carpanzano at 203-975-0074.
Bible Study…Has finished until September 2011; stay tuned for details.
The Legion of Mary. . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the parish hall. All are welcome.
St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Will not meet during the summer. See you in September.
The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesday evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory: basic reading ability required.
Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets Thursday evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory: basic reading ability required.
Introduction to Hebrew. . . Thursdays at 5:30 pm in the rectory: This is a true beginner’s class in grammar.
Coffee Hour. . . Will start again in September.
St. John’s in THE NEWS:
The STAMFORD ADVOCATE:
140 years ago, or so:
June 18, 1869: “On the Fourth-or rather on Monday the Fifth of July, St. John’s Roman Catholic Church is to have an excursion to Woodside Park. A good brass and string band is to be engaged, and everything possible will be done to make the occasion an enjoyable one to all who choose to attend.”
The CONNECTICUT CATHOLIC:
130 years ago, or so:
June 18, 1881: Stamford. “A May-day party in June may be somewhat out of time, but that which the pupils of St. John’s school enjoyed at Sound beach last week, and which was the gift of Rev. Father Rogers, was not considered by the children the least out of place. The children, accompanied by Fathers Rogers and Walsh, left town on an early train, and arriving at the place of destination, immediately gave themselves up to the enjoyment of the occasion. The boys played baseball, kicked football and ran races; and the girls enjoyed the swings, gathered shells, and otherwise enjoyed themselves as only girls know how. At 4:30, a heavy shower came up, or rather came down, and brought the festivities to an abrupt termination. So picking up their empty lunch baskets, and hoisting a perfect forest of umbrellas, the 200 children made rapid locomotion for the cars, which made still more expeditious locomotion for Stamford, where they arrived at 6 o’clock. The children’s clothes were somewhat damp, but the remembrance of the day’s amusement kept their spirits high, and they joyfully scampered to their homes with beaming faces and hearts brimful of gratitude to Father Rogers, the generous donor of their May-day party in June.”
120 years ago, or so:
June 16, 1894 : Stamford. “Last Sunday in St. John’s Roman Catholic church was witnessed a most pleasing and devotional scene. The members and candidates for admission into the Sodalities of the Children of Mary and Immaculate Conception entered the church singing the Litany of the Blessed Virgin and carrying banners of their respective societies. After vespers were sung a beautiful crown of flowers surmounted by a cross was placed up the altar, after which a dozen little misses dressed in white made offers of garlands and bouquets as pledges of affection and devotion to their heavenly queen. The candidates were then admitted to membership, Miss Mamie Boyle reading the act of consecration. The meaning of the ceremony was then explained and words of encouragement given by Father Rogers.”
Come, O Most Holy Spirit, Come
– Fr. Terry Walsh
The moment has arrived….‘our Lord’s Passover is fulfilled’ and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit is revealed to the world on Pentecost: the Holy Spirit, promised by our Lord, ‘sanctifies the Church’ and waters the souls of all who believe in Jesus and come to follow Him.
The Catechism teaches: “The gift of the Spirit ushers in a new era in the ‘dispensation of the mystery’. … during which Christ manifests, makes present, and communicates his work of salvation through the liturgy of His Church, ‘until He comes’….Christ now lives and acts in and with His Church, in a new way…He acts through the Sacraments…the communication of the fruits of Christ’s Paschal mystery”(ccc1076). Through baptism, we are nourished by the fruits of Christ’s sacrifice and formed into that perfect edifice when we freely cooperate with the promptings of the Holy Spirit, who now dwells within. St. Irenaeus wrote: “Like dry flour, which cannot become one lump of dough, one loaf of bread, without moisture, we who are many could not become one in Christ Jesus without the water that comes down from Heaven…. Through the baptism that liberates us from change and decay we have become one in body; through the Spirit we have become one in soul.”
St. Basil the Great wrote beautifully about the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and the work that He accomplishes in and through us. Basil had this to say: “The Spirit is the source of holiness, a spiritual light, and he offers his own light to every mind to help it in its search for truth. By nature the Spirit is beyond the reach of our mind, but we can know him by his goodness. The power of the Spirit fills the whole universe, but he gives himself only to those who are worthy, acting in each according to the measure of his faith.” We are infused with the supernatural gift of faith at baptism and it grows according to our response to our Lord’s call. It’s important to reflect on our relationship with God in order to “Live the Gospel” – this daily relationship is maintained through thoughtful meditation of our Lord’s will for us and our response to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. Do we receive the Sacraments with thankful hearts and praise God for His generosity? As we reflect upon our lives, are we able to recognize the effects of grace when we have approached God with humility and a sincere desire for holiness? “Simple in himself,” Basil writes, “the Spirit is manifold in his might works. The whole of his being is present to each individual; the whole of his being is present everywhere. Though shared in by many, he remains unchanged; his self-giving is no loss to himself. Like the sunshine, which permeates all the atmosphere, spreading over land and sea, and yet is enjoyed by each person as though it were for him alone, so the Spirit pours forth his grace in full measure, sufficient for all, and yet is present as though exclusively to everyone who can receive him….He gives a delight limited only by their own nature, not by his ability to give….The Spirit raises our hearts to heaven, guides the steps of the weak, and brings to perfection those who are making progress. He enlightens those who have been cleansed from every stain of sin and makes them spiritual by communion with himself. As clear transparent substances become very bright when sunlight falls on them and shine with a new radiance, so also souls in whom the Spirit dwells, and who are enlightened by the Spirit, become spiritual themselves and a source of grace for others….Through the Spirit we become citizens of heaven, we are admitted to the company of the angels, we enter into eternal happiness, and abide in God. Through the Spirit we acquire a likeness to God; indeed, we attain what is beyond our most sublime aspirations – we become God.”