For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link: Bulletin for Sunday June 22, 2014
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Pastor’s Corner: Bishop Caggiano arrived at the rectory at 8:30 on the morning of March 8th. He came to offer the 10 am Mass at the Basilica, to begin the annual celebration in honor of Saint Patrick with the Ancient Order of Hibernians. He customarily arrives at parishes early, to chat with priests and parishioners. That morning was different, for he wanted to speak with me, alone. He sent his priest secretary from the room, closed my office door, and began.
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The bishop had returned from Rome just the day before. While there, among other matters, he met with Monsignor James Checchio, Rector of the Pontifical North American College, the American major seminary in the Vatican. The rector asked the bishop if he would consider temporarily releasing me from my duties at Saint John’s for one year, in order to research and write a history of the seminary. On the morning of March 8th, Bishop Caggiano told me of the project, underscored his support for it, and asked if I would accept the job.
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My immediate response was a stunned silence. My mother had recently died, my father and family were still in mourning, and I had long ago concluded that Saint John’s would be my final resting place—eventually. That was my response to the bishop. He told me to think about it, since my acceptance of the work, he said, “. . . would be good for the [American] College and good for the Diocese”. When I told my father of this conversation, he quipped, “Obviously, the bishop has never read any of your books.” Thanks, dad!
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I accepted the offer. Last week, the Episcopal Board of Governors of the American seminary met in New Orleans and approved the project. Last night, at the North American alumni meeting in New York City, both Cardinal Egan and Cardinal Dolan publicly announced and enthusiastically endorsed my appointment before the assembled priest and bishop alumni. I will leave in September and return to Saint John’s in September, 2015. During the year, even while in Rome, I will remain the Pastor of Saint John’s, although my salary will be paid by the seminary. Fathers Walsh and Audette will remain in the parish, and the bishop will soon name a temporary administrator.
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That’s my summer news. Please say a prayer for the success of this project. It is quite a task to research and write a full scale book in only one year. Your prayers will help. God bless you, and have a great summer.
Please pray for the sick: Bonnie and Dorothy Keyes, Ruth Coyle, Jacqueline Domingue, Dorothy Clements, John Palumbo, Kristine Barron, Silvana Smith, Louise Munro, Lena Cocchia, Sr. Anne-Marguerite, Christina Samon Ta-Chu, Charles Armstrong, Pasqualina Bruzzese, Nancy Gallagher, Megan Bobroske, Connor Walsh.
Please pray for those who have recently died: Thomas Hogan, James Capodanno, Bronislawa (Betty) Balutowski, Wisler Nau, Liliana Pappa, Elinor Zarimski, Amelia DeDomenici, Jessica Rybnick Fleckenstein, Jeanette Pavia, Maryann Cornelio, Ernest Szechenyi, Theodore Scheidel, Jr., Virginia Donaghue, Ann R. DiGiovanni.
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, June 23rd.
Banns of Marriage:
I Banns: Barry Marc Delmonico and Kristen Romano.
III Banns: Lawrence Nardi and Laura Falcone.
III Banns: Eugene Russo, Jr. and Kathleen Geist.
Sunday, June 22nd: 6-8pm, for the entire family
Here at Saint John’s: L’Angelus will perform again for our parish in our parking lot.
Bring the whole family and a picnic supper, and enjoy the music on a beautiful summer evening.
St. Monica Latin Reading Group: Wednesdays at 6:15 pm in the Rectory. June 25th will be our last meeting until September. We are translating Tertullian’s De Oratione [On Prayer], and his Apologeticus pro Christianis [A Defense for Christians]. A basic reading ability in Latin [high school level] is necessary.
St. Monica Biblical Greek Grammar: Thursdays at 6:30 pm. An intermediate grammar/reading class. We are translating the Gospel of John. Basic grammatical knowledge of Biblical Greek is required. For the summer, we meet in a parishioner’s home. Call the rectory for information, if you’re interested.
Weekly Sunday collection:
Sunday June 15, 2014 $ 10,074.60
Sunday June 16, 2013 $ 10,602.31
Please increase your Sunday offering by $5.00 each weekend.
“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta
June 29th, Sunday Readings: Acts 12:1-11; 2 Tm 4:6-8, 17-18; Mt 16:13-19.
Annual Bishop’s Appeal: We made our goal: $101,625.00 . We’ve made our goal, so we’re done! To all who donated so far, THANK YOU, VERY MUCH!
Home Schooling Families: Has finished meeting for the year. We’ll start again in September, when we meet in the Msgr. Nagle Parish hall each First Friday of each month. All ages are welcome. Please contact Bridget Bethray: firstname.lastname@example.org, or Janet Lancaster: 203-637-3301, OR: email@example.com.
RCIA: Anyone interested in becoming Catholic, or adult Catholics wanting to receive First Communion or Confirmation, please call the parish secretary (324-1553, ext. 21).
St. John’s Women’s Groups, both large & small, meet regularly in the rectory and in homes. Contact Lisa Kotasek: firstname.lastname@example.org OR: 203-253-3499.
St John’s Flock (20’s and 30’s Young Adult Ministry): Meets every Monday from
7-9pm for Holy Hour at the Basilica, and fellowship afterwards, as well as other social/service events. For more info, join our Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/321733548424/ or email Mary at email@example.com.
Francis & Clare: Our High School Youth Group. Students interested in being part of the Teen Leadership Group: E-mail Deirdre.firstname.lastname@example.org 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 email@example.com.
Birthright: seeks volunteers: Support women to bring their babies to term, providing pregnancy tests, connecting women with medical, financial, legal and other resources. Flexible schedules; training provided. Call 348-4355 or www.birthright.org.
Saint Gabriel Church: Solemn High Mass in the Extraordinary Form: Friday June 27th at 7:30 PM, on the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Refreshments to follow in the Parish Meeting Room.
Job Seekers: Meets 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: www.redinc.biz or 203-866-1606: Next meeting: This Monday, June 23rd.
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, June 21, 2014
4:00 +Charles and Josephine Davis req. Joseph Melfi
Sunday, June 22, 2014
7:30 Monsignor Stephen DiGiovanni req. Josephine
10:00 +Frances Delaney Birthday Remembrance req. Arthur J. Wargo
12:00 Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
5:00 +Frank Alagia
6:00 NO 6PM MASS
Monday, June 23, 2014
8:00 +Ann DiGiovanni req. Pasqualina Bruzzese
12:10 Anna Grace Melton req. John Paul and Angela Marchetti
Tuesday, June 24, 2014
8:00 +Gerda Jensen req. James M. Rubino
12:10 Father Terrence Walsh req. Josephine
Wednesday, June 25, 2014
8:00 Father Albert Audette req. Josephine
12:10 Monsignor Stephen DiGiovanni req. Millie Terenzio
Thursday, June 26, 2014
8:00 +Patricia S. Topper req. Richard and Deborah Brennan
12:10 +Mr. and Mrs. Vincent Raschella req. Gary and Armelle
Friday, June 27, 2014
8:00 +Virginia and Eileen Carr req. Marie Carr
12:10 Special Intentions Dr. George Szele
Saturday, June 28, 2014
8:00 +Wladek and Willemina req. daughter
12:10 +Kathy Robustelli req. Marie Pinto
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 family society meeting 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.
Francis & Clare: Co-Ed High School Youth Group. Email Deirdre.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pray to end Legalized Abortion: Wednesdays, 7-10:30a.m., Stamford’s Planned Parenthood, 1039 East Main St.
St. Dominic Savio Society:For spiritual formation of 7th-8thgrades-HighSchooler young men: Ferry: 324-1553 x22.
St. Maria Goretti Society: For the spiritual formation of 7th-8th grades-High School young ladies: Beth: 975-0074.
Holy Hour: on Monday Nights, 7pm—8 pm. Adoration, Holy Rosary, and Benediction. All are welcome!
The Legion of Mary: Wednesday Evenings: 7:30 pm ’till 9:00 pm in the Msgr. Nagle Hall. All are welcome.
St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies:
—Latin Patristic Reading Group:Wednesday evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory: basic reading ability required.
June 25th last meeting until September.
–-Intermediate Studies in Biblical Greek: Intermediate Grammar: Thursday evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory.
Coffee Hour. . .Starts again in September, after the 10:00 a.m. Family Mass in the Monsignor Nagle Parish Hall.
St. John’s in THE NEWS:
THE STAMFORD ADVOCATE:
142 years Ago:
June 26, 1872: LAYING OF THE CORNER STONE OF THE NEW CATHOLIC CHURCH. “On Sunday last, June 23rd, the corner stone for a new Roman Catholic church on Atlantic street, in this village was laid. The Right Rev. Bishop McFarland was present and performed in person the most important part of the ceremonies. A number of Catholic clergymen from neighboring towns and cities were also present, including Rev. Fathers Hewett of New York, Cooney of Providence, one of the first pastors of the Stamford mission, Gaffney of Thomastown, and Walsh of Meriden. With these gentlemen were Mr. James Murphy of Providence, the architect of the church, Rev. Father Fagan and his assistant, Father Healy. The ceremony was impressive and was witnessed by a large congregation numbering perhaps three thousand persons. At half past three o’clock, p.m., the strains of martial music denoted the coming of the procession which had been formed in the neighborhood of the old church. It was headed by the Howe Band of Bridgeport, numbering twenty musicians and drum major. The band was immediately followed by the “Willis Guard,” a cadet company numbering one hundred and presenting a neat appearance. These were followed by the various religious and benevolent societies connected with St. John’s Roman Catholic Church, and by its members generally. When the procession reached the new church, the clergy, with their attendants and others invited, mounted a platform which had been erected on the massive foundations of the main tower. The platform was shaded by a large American flag, and in its center a stand was erected for the convenience of the speaker. A basket wreathed with flowers was placed on the corner stone and the people were invited to place their contributions in it. A large number came forward and placed envelopes bearing their contributions. Meanwhile the Bishop walked in procession around the walls. The Bishop sprinkled holy water upon the walls and upon the cross erected where the altar is to stand. Returning to the corner stone, the Bishop, using a silver trowel, laid a time capsule in the cavity of the stone and covered it with mortar. He then mounted the platform and delivered a brief but impressive address to the people. The band occupied the platform during the ceremonies and, at intervals, played “My Country ‘tis of thee” and the Latin hymn “Venite Adoremus.” At the conclusion of the ceremonies, the band again headed the procession, which marched back to the original starting point. The following is a list of items in the corner stone: different U.S. bills, coins and currency of the period; gold and silver medals; old Roman coins; copies of the Stamford Advocate, New York Freeman’s Journal and Catholic Register, and the Hartford Daily Times.”
-Fr. Terry Walsh
“Be convinced that this (Eucharist) is not what nature has formed, but what the blessing has consecrated. The power of the blessing prevails over that of nature, because by the blessing nature itself is changed…Could not Christ’s word, which can make from nothing what did not exist, change existing things into what they were not before? It is no less a feat to give things their original nature than to change their nature.” – St. Ambrose
How do you guys do that? I’ll never forget the wonder in that child’s face. I had just finished speaking with the first Communion class, preparing them for their big day. After explaining how the priest consecrates ordinary bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ, I asked if there were any questions. One boy eagerly raised his hand and asked, “How do you guys do that?” It was beautiful! He believed with his whole heart, but he didn’t understand exactly how it happened. The path to true understanding is paved with just such childlike humility and trust. Jesus promised that if we seek Him with such an open heart, and persevere in prayer, we will certainly receive the graces we desire: understanding, knowledge, wisdom. A few years ago, my Dad and I visited Ireland. We hopped in a car and made our way through beautiful and vibrant villages until we finally reached the picturesque town of Kinsale on the Southern Coast. Winding our way through the narrow streets lined with rather old and odd shaped buildings, we suddenly found ourselves stuck in traffic. A few moments later, a band of people were crossing in front of our line of cars, singing. Everyone was getting out of their cars, straining to see what was going on. Naturally, we put the car in park and joined them. As we moved closer to the intersection, we saw people falling to their knees. A glance to our left explained everything. Our Lord was passing by: it was the Feast of Corpus Christi! The people of Kinsale were celebrating the nearly thousand year old Feast of Corpus Christi. Processing though their streets at the conclusion of Holy Mass, the priest raised the Monstrance holding the Eucharist, followed by all the parishioners: Jesus was showering them with grace. Similar processions were taking place on that day throughout the world. The singing grew louder and sweeter as more and more people joined in the procession: “Pange, Linguia, gloriosi / Corporis mysterium / Sanguineisque pretiosi….” “Sing, my tongue, the Savior’s glory / of His flesh the mystery sing / of the Blood, all price exceeding / shed by our immortal King / destined for the world’s redemption / from a noble womb to spring.” Verse after verse of St. Thomas Aquinas’ beautiful hymn, composed specifically for this Feast, brought tears to many who lined the narrow sidewalks along the course of the Procession. They understood the grace of this moment.
Until the late 12th century, the Church had focused more attention on the efficacy of grace at work in those who received the Eucharist. “Thus, according to the Fathers, the purpose of the Eucharist was not so much to make Christ present among us as to be our sacrificial meal. The effects of the Eucharist, rather than the Real Presence, claimed their fullest attention. Certainly they knew that the Real Presence was necessary to secure these effects, but they saw it in relation to the sacrificial action…”(Catholic Encyclopedia, vol.4, p.345). By the early 13th century, however, the Church began to focus more attention on the Presence of Christ in the Eucharist. There was an eager desire to stay with Him, to Adore Him in the Eucharist and simply contemplate the mystery of His unparalleled humility and love for us – to converse with Him, heart to heart. A couple significant events helped propel this understanding and strongly influenced Pope Urban IV, who eventually proclaimed the Feast to the Universal Church in 1264. The first incident concerned the visions of Blessed Juliana (1193-1252). Juliana was a devout Augustinian Religious living in Liege (Belgium) who greatly venerated the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist. She began having visions concerning the Eucharist, which continued over the course of twenty years. “About 1209 (Juliana) reported a vision, many times repeated, of the full moon in splendor except for a dark area on one side. She came to understand that the moon represented the Church, and that the dark area was caused by the absence of a feast in honor of the Blessed Sacrament. Juliana communicated her revelation to John of Lausanne, Canon of Liege, who in turn referred the matter to the Archdeacon of Leige, Jacques Pantaleon….Years later, Jacques Pantaleon, who had become Pope Urban IV…extended the Feast to the whole Church by the bull Transiturus de hoc mundo, issued from Orvieto in 1264”(Catholic Encyclopedia, p.346). Then in 1263, Peter of Prague, a priest, was experiencing a crisis in faith. He struggled to believe in the substantial Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. Yet, his persistence led to a great miracle. Recall the Gospel scene when Jesus fed the five-thousand with a meager five barley loaves, a foreshadowing of the bountiful efficacy of the Eucharist. When our Lord explained the Bread of Life to his followers, many refused to believe. Jesus said to them: “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you; he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him”(John 6:53-55). After hearing these words, many walked away – they simply lacked childlike trust. Neither did they have the humility to seek a deeper understanding. Peter of Prague, on the other hand, who likewise was troubled by this great mystery, persevered in prayer. He wanted to believe, yet found himself doubting that mere bread and wine could actually be changed into the Substantial Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus Christ. Finally, he decided to make a pilgrimage to Rome to pray at the very tomb of St. Peter and plead his case for the grace to believe.“On his way back from Rome, he stopped in Bolsena, where, while he was saying Mass in the Crypt of St. Christine, he saw blood come out of the Host, so much so that the Corporal got completely wet. Pope Urban IV, who was in Orvieto at that time, struck by such an extraordinary event, ordered the Sacred Cloth to be brought there”(The Cathedral of Orvieto, Solini Marcello, Plurigraf, p.2). Like that little boy, who eagerly hoped for a deeper understanding and had the courage to raise his hand and ask, Peter of Prague raised his heart to God and received his reply. In a very real way, the persistent prayer of one man, Peter of Prague, led to the Feast of Corpus Christi. If you make a pilgrimage to the Cathedral at Orvieto, you will see that 800 year old Corporal soaked with the Blood of Christ, the answer to Peter’s prayer. “Corpus Christi!” What sweet words we are privileged to hear at every Holy Mass: “The Body of Christ!” Think of it. The same Blood that gushed from the Host that lain upon the Corporal for Peter of Prague is the very same Blood that rushes upon us. What a uniquely powerful moment! The entire world is transformed each time a member of the Church receives the Body of Christ. Imagine if we could only receive Him once a year, or, once in a lifetime. Would we prepare for that moment any differently?