For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link: Bulletin for Sunday June 30, 2013

Gazebo 06-30-13 Bulletin

Pastor’s Corner. . . Work on the gazebo restoration/reconstruction is in full swing, as you may have noticed during the past days. Our workmen, led by Matus Stachura, a master carpenter, from Mako Carpentry, LLC of Norwalk have been hard at it. This is the same company and workmen who installed the new roof on the rectory following last year’s super Storm Sandy. Their work is superb, and they are also sensitive to conserving historic structures, so they are a perfect fit for this portion of the job.

Once they began dismantling the gazebo, they discovered the porch “foundation” was composed of two piles of stones. While the stones were elegantly stacked one upon another in the 1850’s, their time had come. Nothing more was holding that porch up! So, they removed the stone piles and the rotted flooring, dug four deep, circular holes, and poured new concrete footings, upon which they rebuilt the flooring frame, using as much of the original wood timbers as possible: about one half is original. They also removed the porch roofing, down to the original wood. The wooden substructure is like a mosaic of triangular wooden pieces, all neatly fitted together. Exterior portions of three of the support rafters were rotted, but only those portions that had supported the enclosed gutters, which had leaked. The majority of the rafters are in perfect condition. They sawed into the present white clapboarding at the back of the porch roof, and uncovered the original 1850’s walls: tongue and groove planking, painted a mustard yellow. Behind that mustard yellow walling is brickwork, filling all the balloon framing of the exterior walls, that served as the most modern firebreak in the 1850’s. That means we cannot put any insulation inside the balloon framing, so we’ll have to figure something else out for insulation.

The decorative elements are in remarkably good shape: the only really rotted parts formed the baseboard, exposed to water for more than 150 years. The rest is almost like new. I know because I have spent time during this past week with our custodian, Tony Colon, helping with some of the restoration work. Since the parish schedule loosens up during the summer months, I have occupied myself by using a heat gun, paint scraper and sander stripping the layers of old paint from beautifully carved pieces from the porch. The 1857 workmen’s original pencil numbering used to assemble the porch can still be found on the undersides of some of these pieces; there is even a signature of one workman on the underside of a piece of baseboard trim! All the pieces of trim and major ballustrades should be completely cleaned up by the end of next week, so we can begin reassembling the jigsaw puzzle that is the gazebo-porch.

At this point, I believe we will not be able to continue with the work during the summer. The building is being tested for lead paint, and we have to wait for those results. Likewise, new windows need to be ordered and installed. All this means much money—much more than we have. So, prudence dictates patience, and we’ll plan for next Spring. —Msgr. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick: John Duffy, Mary Bauer, Mary Rose Bauer, Gertha Laurent, Alexandra Laurent, Jean Galasso, Jesus Orbagosa, Gary Everett, Robert Jegle, Bonnie Keyes, Thomas Beirne, Patrick A. Toole, Sr., Katherine Klass, Patricia McNamee, Ian Rice, Maureen Henry James, Diane Grant, Huong Diep Nguyen, Kevin O’Byrne, Paul Cavalli, Peter Baccaro, Yvette Constant, Billy Therriault, Megan Bobroske, Harrie Humphreys, Lena Cocchia, Msgr. Peter Dora, Connie Ward, Flint Moger, Kathleen Moger, Catherine Olnek, Margaret Kelly, Julia Oliveira.

Please pray for those who have recently died: Sr. Fernanda, P.O.S.C., Anne Zerrenner, Gloria Donahue, Donald Sabia, Robert Luden, Donna Fraleigh, Frances White, Hugh Troshynski, Sheila Catherine Beirne, Edward Cipri, Msgr. William A. Nagle, Felix Boursiquot, Helen Moger, Alfred Preziosi, Brian M. Murray, Fr. James C. Hoge, O.S.B., Fr. David Howell, Mario Stano, Raymond Jean-Rene, Caroline Pavia, Virginia Raiteri, Myrtle Rocco, Frank Pironto, Betsabe Chung, Dorothy Konopka, Patricia Lee Thiesfeldt, Nancy Claire O’Shea, Louis Angenola, Gerard Phillippe, Naida Cognetta, Cheryl Wolven, Richard Lauture, Mauril Lauture, Eduardo Aquiles, Celia Perdigon, Marge Sabia.

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

Monday Evening Holy Hour: Monday nights 7-8:00 pm for Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and Holy Rosary in the Basilica. Next Holy Hour, Monday July 1st.

Banns of Marriage:
Banns I: Lourdes Daniel Delbeau and Charles Lubens Perard
Banns III: Nitya Elizabeth Abraham and Terrence Peter Moduthagam
Banns III: Mary Cycon and Jeffrey Jon Firment Spetland

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

Biblical Greek Grammar: An intermediate grammar and reading class: Some basic grammatical knowledge of Biblical Greek is required. Thursdays at 6:30 pm in the Rectory. Call the rectory.

Relics of Saints for June: On the Saint Joseph Altar: Saints Peter and Paul, Pamphilius, Peter Martyr, Dionysius, Francis, Julian, Norbert, Severinus, Primus, Queen Margaret, Barnabus, Onophrius, Anthony of Padua, Basil, Vitus, King Francis, Peregrinus, Gervase, Aloysius Gonzaga, Paulinus, Joan, John the Baptist, Gallicanus, Crescentius, Pope Leo II.

Summer Bible Discussion Group: For some cool summer reading! We will begin in the rectory on Tuesday, June 25th from 7-8:00 pm. and meet each Tuesday evening through the summer. We will read and discuss the Epistle of James, using: James: Pearls for Wise Living Study Set by Jeff Cavins and Sarah Christmyer. This is part of The Great Adventure Bible Study Series, published by Ascension Press, available there for $24.95. It is also available on Amazon through Adoremus Books for about $19.00. Everyone is welcome. Questions? please contact Vicki Johnson at or at 203-559-6965, or Leah Kurtz at or at 203-222-9796.

Fortnight of Freedom: Beginning June 22nd [Feast of Saints Thomas More and John Fisher] continuing through July 4th, every Catholic church in the country will observe special services and ask parishioners to offer special prayers to preserve religious freedom in our country. For Catholics this is particularly crucial because of the upcoming Supreme Court decisions about Obamacare, which forces Catholic institutions to offer health insurance providing services contrary to Catholic morality. Eucharistic Adoration each Monday evening during the Fortnight of Freedom will offer special prayers: please join us, and pray for our country.

Weekly Sunday collection:
Sunday June 23, 2013 $ 11,215.00
Sunday June 24, 2012 $ 12,183.26
“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.” —Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

July 7th, Sunday Readings: Is 66:10-14c; Gal 6:14-18; Lk 10:1-12, 17-20 or 10:1-9.

Annual Bishop’s Appeal: Saint John’s annual goal, set by the diocese, is $100,000. The funds collected are used for the numerous charitable and educational works of the Diocese. We have collected to date: $76,987.00. Please be generous; we need everyone’s help.

Home Schooling Families: A group for home schooling families meets monthly on Tuesday in the Nagle Hall. All ages are welcome. Please contact Bridget Bethray at, or Janet Lancaster at 203-637-3301,

St John’s Flock (20’s and 30’s Young Adult Ministry): Come join the Flock for monthly Faith Formation meetings on the 2nd Thursday of the month and other social/service events. For more information, please go to or email

Francis & Clare: Our High School Youth Group. Students interested in being part of the Teen Leadership Group: E-mail to get involved.

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. Come back to God, who is love and mercy. Please call (203) 416-1619 or

Voluntary Services for the Blind: Bring sunshine to someone’s life. Volunteers are needed to be drivers, readers, friendly visitors, shoppers and clerical assistants for legally blind persons. For information, call 203-324-6611, ext 2.

Birthright of Greater Stamford is seeking volunteers: Supports women with unplanned pregnancies to bring their babies to term, providing pregnancy tests, connecting women with medical, financial, legal and other needed resources. Ability to commit 3 hours per week in the office is desirable. Schedules are flexible, and training is provided. Call 348-4355 if interested, or click onto .

NEW BOOK: Monsignor DiGiovanni’s newest book: a brief biography of Cardinal Kung. You can order it on Amazon: Ignatius: The Life of Cardinal Ignatius Kung Pin-Mei. This is a paperback, and provides a readable account of the Cardinal’s heroic life, which includes photos of his family, as a young priest and bishop, as well as his trial and persecution for the Faith. It is an engaging read to put on your summer reading list. Order through the parish bookstore.

Job Seekers: Meets the 4th Monday monthly in the rectory at 7:30pm: There’s no charge. Led by Melanie Szlucha whose company, Red Inc., a leader in helping find jobs. More info, see: or 203-866-1606: Next meeting: Monday, July 22nd.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, June 29, 2013
4:00 +Dorothy and Fred Wahlstrom req. Leon Taricani
Sunday, June 30, 2013
7:30 +Dila Haidar req. her granddaughter
8:30 +Angelina Candella req. John Paul and Angela Marchetti
10:00 +Kelly Romaniello req. Joseph and Agnes Kung
11:30 Special Intentions William Carello req. son
5:00 +Alphonse and Lucy Alagia
6:00 +Patrick Kane and Family req. Estate of Catherine Kane and Family
Monday, July 1, 2013
8:00 People of the Parish
12:10 In Honor of the Most Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ req. Marion Morris
Tuesday, July 2, 2013
8:00 +Margaret Timon req. Tom Timon
12:10 +Mary Darby req. Duffy Family
Wednesday, July 3, 2013
8:00 +Gene Tushaj req. his wife Age
12:10 +Charles Pascale req. John and Laura Pascale
Thursday, July 4, 2013
8:00 +Anthony Ramos req. Lilian and Alvina Ramos
12:10 +Anne Hourican req. her grandchildren
Friday, July 5, 2013
8:00 Faithful Departed
12:10 Gavin Samedi Birthday req. Anne Marie Samedi
Saturday, July 6, 2013
8:00 Forgotten Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.
12:10 +Guido Rebula req. wife Benita, children and grandchildren

Baptisms: Are celebrated every day of the week, according to the schedule of the parish priests and the families. Baptisms at St. John’s are one-family only ceremonies: never groups. Please call Cindy (203-324-1553, ext 21).

Weddings: Couples must contact and begin meeting with one of the parish priests for at least 6 months before a hoped for wedding date at Saint John’s. Please call the parish secretary, Cindy, or one of the priests for an initial discussion.

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 Family Society: A Potluck dinner and speaker for families: meets 4 times a year….next date to be announced

Francis & Clare: Co-Ed High School Youth Group. Email

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

St. Dominic Savio Society and St. Maria Goretti Society: Will resume in September.

Holy Hour: on Monday Nights, 7pm—8 pm. Adoration, Holy Rosary, and Benediction. All are welcome!

The Legion of Mary: Meets on Wednesday Evenings, 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.

The Latin Reading Group: Meets Wednesday evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory: basic reading ability required.

Intermediate Studies in Biblical Greek: Intermediate Grammar: Meets Thursday evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory.

Coffee Hour: Starts again in September.

St. John’s in THE NEWS:
155 years ago, or so:
July 3, 1858: Religious Intelligence. “Bishop McFarland (Romish) administered the rite of confirmation to about 70 persons on Sunday last, in Stamford.”

145 years ago, or so:
July 3, 1868: “Today (Friday) a high requiem Mass for the repose of the soul of Daniel Hickey, will be celebrated at the Roman Catholic chapel, the Rev. Eugene Gaffney, assistant priest, officiating. The occasion will be one of unusual interest.” (EDITOR’S NOTE: Daniel Hickey was the Great-Great Grandfather of Rosemary Hickey Burns, who attended St. John’s School and is the author of Springdale Remembered, published by The Stamford Historical Society in 1982.)

July 2, 1868: “Though our Borough Fathers have taken no official notice for the proper observance of the anniversary of American Independence, our Roman Catholic friends appear to be determined to do their part in making the fourth what it ought to be-a day of popular enjoyment. Extensive preparations have been made for their grand excursion and picnic at Woodside Park: and, if the weather be favorable, we will have the opportunity of seeing an occasion of enjoyment such as not been lately witnessed in this vicinity.”

125 years ago, or so:
June 29, 1889: STAMFORD. “Rev. James Lawless of this town was ordained a priest at Boston by the archbishop. The services were witnessed by his father, Mr. Michael Lawless, and his other relatives. His many friends wish him every blessing in his holy calling. He will celebrate High Mass in this town on Sunday.”

85 years ago, or so:
July 6, 1926: St. John’s Club Wins Point Trophy. Takes At Least One Place In Each of Nine Events. “Stamford put on a safe and sane Fourth of July celebration at Halloween Park yesterday afternoon and St. John’s Recreational Club did their share of the celebrating by annexing the point trophy in the athletic meet. At least one place in each of the nine races was won by the club, and, as if that wasn’t enough, their team of girls went out and captured the 440-yard relay.” (EDITOR’S NOTE: Four of the silver cup trophies earned at this event are currently on display in St. John’s Rectory.)

The Psalms….and the Sacraments– Fr. Terry Walsh

“All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work”(2Tim 3:16-17)

It’s been said that the Old Testament is revealed in the New and the New Testament is hidden in the Old.

Consider the PSALMS, the collection of 150 inspired songs that reveal to us Who God is. At the same time, the psalms help us to understand our own human condition as children of God, seen through the eyes of the gift of faith.

St. Ambrose wrote: “A psalm is the prayer of praise of the people of God…the cry of all humanity, the applause of the universe, the voice of the Church, the sweet-sounding confession of faith, entire surrender to divine power, blessed freedom, a cry of happiness, an echo of joy…”

The Psalms point to the Messiah, Jesus, and tell us about His life – His sufferings, His joys, His Kingship. The Psalms offer thanks and praise; they cry out to God in sorrow and in petition; they reveal His Wisdom and tell of the extraordinary history of the people He calls His own. They sing of the greatness of God in our liturgical celebrations. Each day, the Psalms are prayed in the “Prayer of the Church” known as the “Liturgy of the Hours” as well as in every Holy Mass offered throughout the world. Indeed, we see our own joys and sorrows, our heartfelt thanks, our wonder and awe burst forth in the psalms.

Consider the “Penitential Psalms” (6, 32, 38, 51, 102, 130, 143). Meditating on these Psalms before receiving the Sacrament of Reconciliation will help us to make a heartfelt examination of conscience and enter into the proper disposition before encountering the Merciful Christ:

“Have mercy on me, God, in your kindness; in your abundant compassion blot out my offense. Wash away all my guilt; from my sin cleanse me….A pure heart create for me, O God, put a steadfast spirit within me….A humbled, contrite heart you will not spurn”(ps51).

Perhaps one of the most familiar Psalms is the Psalm of the Good Shepherd (23) sung of often in times of suffering and trials throughout our lives. We identify with the psalmist’s meditation and simply call upon the Lord. He is always near to help us and strengthen us through His grace.

Jesus is the Good Shepherd who loves His sheep and takes pity on them. Indeed, He lays down His life in order that they may have life, “and have it abundantly.” We eagerly come to His Table, that is the Altar, and He pours His life-giving grace into our hearts through Holy Eucharist so abundantly that our cup, our soul, runs over – provided, of course, that we receive Him with a pure and open heart – that is, in the State of Grace – made possible through Baptism. And, even after Baptism, if one falls, our Lord is ready to lift him up through the Sacrament of Reconciliation. All that is required is our contrition, our offering of our sins to our Lord through the priest in the sacrament of Confession, a willingness to do penance, and finally, Absolution. And, through His Grace poured out to us through the Sacraments, we will one day rejoice in the verdant pastures of Heaven – boundless and everlasting joy.

Do you have a favorite Psalm?