For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday October 30, 2011

Pastor’s Corner. . . The Solemnity of All Saints on November 1st and Memorial of All Souls Day on November 2nd call to mind an aspect about the reality of the Church of which many people are unaware: The Catholic Church isn’t merely an institution; it is the living Body of Christ that reaches beyond the here and now: Christ is the Head, we—both the baptized living and the dead—are the members, through which Our Lord works to save everyone. All Saints Day recalls the innumerable men, women, and children who led lives of heroic virtue and great holiness. They pray for us to Our Lord; they continue to be members of the Church, and continue to practice charity from heaven in our regard.

All Souls Day on November 2nd calls to mind those innumerable men, women, and children who have died, but whose lives were less than perfectly holy. 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, who continue to be members of the Church. Not everyone is in Heaven; not everyone is in Purgatory. The popular fallacy is that everyone goes to Heaven. Not so, at least not according to Our Lord’s revelation in Scripture and the Church’s consistent teachings. If we live without Christ in this life, or if we live contrary to Christ, then why should we want or expect to be with Him forever in the next life?

While our society revels in horror stories about the dead during Halloween, the Church turns our attention to the reality of life and death, and beauty of God’s mercy and love for us.
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. 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. By our simple 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, and it costs nothing. A Plenary Indulgence is the remission before God of the temporal punishment due for sins that had been already forgiven by Confession. Sin has a lasting effect on us, which can be cleansed only through penance. 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 grace 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, 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 Creed. This is Christ’s mercy through His Church. We are asked to have faith in the Church established by Christ and to demonstrate our faith in charity by doing these simple spiritual tasks and acts of charity. Let us be mindful of the goodness of Our Lord, pray to the Saints for their intercession, and pray for the faithful departed that they might one day see the God who loves us.

On Saint Joseph’s side chapel you will find the parish’s relics of the Saints displayed. Together, with the other Saints, Our Lady and Our Lord, they are part of the Church, all praying for us, while we pray for the dead: all working for the salvation of all. Happy feast days!
—Msgr. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick. . . Mary D’Arco, Anthony Sansone, Tessie Mulhern, Gary Everett, Alessio Giannitti, Margie Joyce, Tonin Gjepaj, Monica Dewey, Megan Bobroske, Connie Ward, Corrine Mattson, Billy Therriault, Sandra Mayfield, Vincent Sharkey, Sr., Sr. Ellen Mary Doherty, C.S.J., Lily Ann O’Connell, Thomas Mahala, Titina Tarantino, Richard Ridge, Mario Stano, Mark Ferris, Marie Maddox, Terry Cooke, Stacey, Kathleen Nichols, Rev. Carlos Antonio Mesa, Corrie Evans, Shirly Mailhot, Roledonne Samedi.

Please pray for those who have recently died. . . Gladys Brzoska, David Squires, Tom Potts, William Shanley, Jimmy O’Connor, Andrea Pavia, Rocco Buzzio, Vera Benna, Brian Bill, Olga Rich, Morris Smith, Sr. Elizabeth Hart, R.S.M., Margaret Mary Cycon, Mildred J. Fiore, Tana Sibilio, Dr. Bela Szele, Audrey Reda, Helen Pataky, William Kilcoyne, Jr., Giuseppina Docimo, Adelaide Velanzano, Aura Piedra, Jeanne & Andy Robustelli, Mary Ferrara, Genoveffa Melchionno, Cynthia Callahan, Teresa Angelini, Natale Sposato, Joseph George Terenzio.

November 1st. . . The Solemnity of All Saints IS a Holy Day of Obligation, when all Catholics are obliged to attend Mass. The Mass schedule is: Vigil Mass: Monday Oct 31st at 5:15 P.M. Masses on Tuesday, November 1st are at 8:00 A.M., 12:10 P.M. and 5:15 P.M., with confessions 30 minutes prior to each Mass.

November 2nd All Souls Day:Wednesday, All Souls Day, will have the regular daily Mass schedule.

Daylight Savings Time Ends. . . Sunday, November 6th. Please remember to turn back your clocks 1 hour.

Monday Evening Holy Hour . . . Monday nights 7-8:00 pm for Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and Holy Rosary in the church. Next Holy Hour: Monday, October 31st at 7 p.m.

Salus Populi Romani Icon Votive Light Memorial.. .In thanksgiving to the Lord and Blessed Mother req. Ann and Matthew Borkowski.

Memorial Votive Lights . . . The votive lights at the shrine of Saint Peter, Our Lady, St. Joseph, or at the icon of Mary Protectress of the Roman People, may be memorialized each week for the intention or memory of a loved one, for a donation of $20.00 per candle, per week. Please call Cindy at 203-324-1553, ext. 21.

Latin Reading Group: Wednesdays: 6:15 pm in the Rectory (reading ability required).

Biblical Greek Study Group: Thursdays: 6:30 pm in the Rectory (reading ability required).

Repainting the Church. . . $588,853.00 is pledged towards a goal of $629,000.00. I ask everyone’s help. Each parish priest is donating $1,000.00. If each individual or household contributes $1,000, payable over 10 months, we’ll have it: that’s $100. per month, or $25. per week, or $3.57 per day for 10 months. Please, help.

Painted Statues. . . As part of the new decoration of the basilica, John Canning Studios are designed 8 faux statues of saints: four on either side of each of the two large transept windows. Some families have asked if they can “buy” a statue in memory of someone. The answer is “yes”: they are $5,000.00. Each. St. Ann & St. Monica have been taken. The saints not yet taken are: Saint Joachim; Saint Augustine; Blessed Pope Pius IX; St. Patrick; St. Michael; St. Philip Neri; If you are interested, please call the parish secretary: Cindy: 203-324-1553, ext 21.

Saint Monica Patristic Institute. . . Our next study group will begin on November 2nd, continuing each Wednesday, starting at 7:30 pm in the rectory. Our groups will meet each Wednesday in November, January, March & May. Our topic for November is The Incarnation Homilies of Pope Saint Leo the Great, led by Fr. Richard Futie, Pastor of Sacred Heart Parish. There is no charge; classes are 1 hour, and all the texts are in English translations. Everyone is welcome.

The St. Maria Goretti Society Second Annual Food Drive. . . Begins November 5th.  Please help the hungry in our community by donating non-perishable foods.  Beginning next weekend, there will be boxes in the vestibule for your donations.  Your generosity is greatly appreciated!

Sunday October 23, 2011 $ 12,706.75
Sunday October 24, 2010 $ 11,238.40
“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

November 6th Sunday Readings: Wis 6:12-16; 1 Thes 4:13-18; Mt 25:1-13.
Latin Mass. . . Fr. Cyprian LaPastina offers the Latin Mass in the Extraordinary Form each Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. here at Saint John’s. The next Latin Mass is Tuesday, November 1st.

Children’s Choir. . . Anmarie and Tom Galgano are our new music directors for the 10 a.m. Mass and Children’s Choir this year. Any parent whose child or children might be interested in joining the Children’s Choir to sing during each Sunday 10 a.m. Mass, please call the rectory, and leave your name, your child’s name, age and your phone number with Cindy: 203-324-1553, ext. 21.

Home Schooling Families. . . A group for home schooling families meets monthly on Tuesday in the rectory. All ages are welcome. Please contact Julianne DeMarco at 203-966-3641, juliannedemarco@yahoo.com, or Janet Lancaster at 203-637-3301, jmlancaster@optonline.net.

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 ). Next meeting: Thursday, November 10th.

Lost & Found . . . Please check the Lost & Found in the Rectory for any items you may have left in the church. Feel free to call Cindy at the rectory, M-F, 9AM—1:30PM, 203-324-1553 x21.

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).

Project Rachel Ministry. . . offers free and confidential help to those seeking healing after abortion. We invite you to come back to God who is love and mercy. Info. (203) 416-1619 or projectrachel@diobpt.org.

Trinity Catholic High School. . .will have it’s annual Memorial Mass for the deceased graduates, faculty, and staff of Stamford Catholic/Trinity Catholic High School on Wednesday, November 2, 2011 at 7:30PM in the school auditorium. All are welcome. Please call the school (203) 322-3401 if you plan to attend.

St. Gabriel Church—First Saturday Devotions. . . Beginning October 1st. Saint Gabriel Parish will celebrate the First Saturday Devotions in Honor of the Immaculate Heart of Mary for five consecutive months.  On the First Saturday of each month Confessions will be heard from 9:30 to 10 AM.  This will be followed by Mass in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite (Latin Mass according to the 1962 Missal)  Following Mass the Blessed Sacrament will be exposed for 15 minutes of silent meditation and will conclude with Rosary and Eucharistic Benediction.  All are welcome.

Reception For Life. . .There will be a buffet and wine reception to support the work of the Sisters of Life on Tuesday November 1st at St. John’s rectory. Tickets are $50 and are available at the rectory. All are welcome. For more information, please feel free to call Tom Kolenberg (203) 253-3615, or Gene Dagostino (203) 530-1908 or Cindy at the rectory, x21.

Job Seekers . . . Meets the 4th Monday monthly in the rectory at 7:30pm: all are welcome. There’s no charge for these services. The group is led by Melanie Szlucha whose company, Red Inc., is a leader in helping find jobs. More info, see: www.redinc.biz or call her at 203-866-1606. Next meeting: Monday, November 28th.

+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, October 29, 2011
4:00 +Members DeRosa, Kronk, Capobianco Families and Edwin Clark req. Joan and John Kronk
Sunday, October 30, 2011
7:30 +Regina Macko req. Shelley Ward
8:30 +Timothy Guinee req. John Paul and Angela Marchetti
10:00 +Members DeRosa, Kronk, Capobianco Families and Edwin Clark req. Joan and John Kronk
12:00 +Jocelyn, Oswald and Kilda Machado req. Lilian and Alvina Ramos
5:00 +Louise and Arthur Thiel req. Andrew and Valerie McAleer
6:00 +Patrick Kane & Family req. Estate of Catherine Kane & Family
Monday, October 31, 2011
8:00 Thanksgiving to God req. Montanise Paulemon
12:10 +Andrew Alfano req. Edward Nemchek
5:15 +Domenica R. Ferraino req. the Calderaro Family
Tuesday, November 1, 2011
8:00 Souls in Purgatory req. Lilian and Alvina Ramos
12:10 +John McGovern req. Tracy Banahan
5:15 +Joan Bachman req. Dorothy Keyes
Wednesday, November 2, 2011
8:00 Deceased Parishioners
12:10 For the 911 Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.
Thursday, November 3, 2011
8:00 +Deceased members of the Kung and Young Family req. Joseph and Agnes Kung
12:10 +Julia Rusinak and Helen Pepe req. Mary Churley
Friday, November 4, 2011
8:00 +Margaret Timon req. Tom Timon
12:10 +Elizabeth Romeo 1st Anniversary req. Bill Morris and Michelle Sagdati
Saturday, November 5, 2011
8:00 +Members Do Family req. Thang Nguyen
12:10 In Honor of God the Father of all Mankind 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.

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 Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young men, 8th-12th grades. Ferry at 203-324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies, 8th-12th grades. Beth at 203-975-0074.

Holy Hour. . .Come join us for Holy Hour on Monday Nights from 7pm—8 pm. Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, Holy Rosary, and Benediction. All are welcome!

The Legion of Mary. . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm ’till 9:00 pm in the rectory. All are welcome.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies. . .Wednesdays, 7:30 pm in the rectory: Next meeting, November 2nd.

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.

St. John’s in THE NEWS:

THE HARTFORD COURANT:
150 years ago, or so:
November 4, 1858: DEATHS. “In Stamford, Oct. 25, Rev. James Reynolds, AE 49.” (EDITOR’S NOTE: The Reverend James Reynolds was Pastor of St. John’s from 1857 to 1858.)

The STAMFORD ADVOCATE:
120 years ago, or so:
October 31, 1890: St. John’s R.C. Church Matters. “On Saturday, Nov. 1, the Feast of All Saints will be celebrated in this church in the morning. The tar walk recently made in front of the rectory is a great convenience, and workmen are now engaged on a fine roadway between the church and the rectory. All these improvements will make these sidewalks and roads as good as any in town.”

110 years ago, or so:
November 2, 1900: Celebrating All Souls’ Day. “Today is All Souls’ Day on the Catholic calendar, and it was fittingly observed in St. John’s R. C. Church. There were three Masses—one at 5:30, the second at 7 and the third, a Solemn High Mass, at 9 o’clock. The church was very prettily draped for these services, and a catafalque specially arranged for the occasion, a new idea to Stamford, but one which has been in vogue in the larger cities, occupied a place before the altar. The attendance at each of the three services was very large. Services of the stations of the cross were held at 3 o’clock this afternoon, and these will be repeated this evening at 7:30.”

15 years ago, or so:
November 1, 1997: St. John’s turns 150. “On November 16, the freshly painted and newly air-conditioned Church of St. John the Evangelist, the Mother Church of Stamford, will celebrate its 150th birthday with an anniversary Mass at noon, celebrated by Bishop Edward M. Egan. St. John’s beginnings date back to 1847 when it was established as a parish with Rev. Edward J. Cooney as its first pastor. It is the second oldest parish in the diocese. Stamford was a small Yankee town in the early 1800s when immigrants from Ireland began to arrive bringing with them their strong Catholic faith. Since there was no Catholic church in the area, they congregated in homes of friends for Mass which was celebrated by priests from the Bridgeport area and Fordham College. On July 4, 1849, ground was broken for a parish church and a small wooden structure was blessed on January 26, 1851. “We have become a beacon of spirituality located in the heart of the business district,” said Msgr. William A. Nagle, the present pastor of St. John’s.

The Gift of Faith
-Fr. Terry Walsh

Now, faith is the substance of things to be hoped for, the evidence of things that appear not.” -Hebrews 11:1

“He was amazed at their lack of faith.” If we place ourselves in the Gospel scene when Jesus went to visit those he had lived with for so long a time, we can almost feel the pain our Lord must have felt in His heart. After all, these were the people that watched him grow up. Although they did not share in the knowledge of His Divinity before his public ministry began, they nonetheless knew Jesus, Mary and Joseph through a special bond of friendship that naturally existed in their community. Indeed, after beginning His public ministry, Jesus must have been eager to return home to visit them and bring them abundant blessings and to share the joy of the good news – their salvation was at hand.

News of his tremendous works of love and mercy had preceded him and when he arrived, they actually looked upon him with some measure of contempt. Were they envious? He had come back to bless them and pour out His goodness upon them but they did not see him through the eyes of faith. They saw a man they once considered to be a simple carpenter. Had they forgotten that David was once a simple shepherd? Yet he became the King of Israel. But David did not change water into wine. He did not heal the sick or raise the dead. Clearly, Jesus was acting with Divine Power. But they failed to believe. They couldn’t seem to raise their hearts and minds to the Presence of God in their midst. He came to them in a way they did not expect. Their hard hearts brought great stress and sadness to their Redeemer. It must have been an extremely lonely experience for our Lord. It seems as though the age old enemy, pride, had infiltrated the hearts of those greeting our Lord. Their hearts seemed to be close to the graces that would quite naturally have come to them had they humbly sought the peace that touches the soul searching for Truth. Prayer opens the heart and clears the way to receive great graces.

Faith is a gift. At our Baptism, the theological virtues of faith, hope, and love are infused into our souls as we are claimed for Christ and enter into the Divine Life of Grace. It’s God who prompts us: ‘Hey, this is who I am, this is why I made you, these are the plans I have for you, come follow Me.’ And He gives us ‘food for thought.’ Our response was, ‘Yes, that makes sense to me, I believe God did make all things out of love, I believe he made me to share in His life, to come to know him and to fall in love with Him, yeah, I want that!’ And so, we ask for the gift of becoming a “Branch on the Vine” – we ask to be baptized (or our parents ask for that gift on our behalf). Indeed, Baptism opens the door to the Sacramental life where we encounter Christ in a deeply personal way. The “Theological Virtues” that we receive directly from God actually perfect the human or moral virtues. And the gift of faith is necessary in order to believe all that God has revealed to us. Like his friends in his own hometown, Jesus likewise offers us every grace and blessing. He waits for our response. Only when we respond with a humble and gracious heart will we be able to receive Him ‘under our roof’ and receive the gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit and so become faithful and fruitful children of God. Saint Basil the Great wrote, “When we contemplate the blessings of faith even now, as if gazing at a reflection in a mirror, it is as if we already possessed the wonderful things which our faith assures us we shall one day enjoy.” And when contemplating that heavenly community of saints who faithfully responded to the voice of our Lord and now stand in the presence of the Triune God, we do well to remember the boundless love God has for each of us and His Thirst for our love for Him. “Eye has not seen, ear has not heard, nor has it so much as dawned on man what God has prepared for those who love Him.”