For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link: Bulletin for Sunday July 20, 2014

Pastor’s Corner: July 26th is the Feast of Saints Joachim and Anne, the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Their lives are known only through the Gospel of Saint James, an apocryphal book written centuries after that apostle’s death. The information about the lives of Jesus’ grandparents is based on earlier spoken versions, based on their actual lives. The story goes something like this: Anne was a wealthy and faithful Jewess from Bethlehem; Joachim was an exceedingly rich and observant Jewish man in Nazareth, of the royal house of David. Theirs was a virtuous and pious married life. As a sign of their love for God, they divided their substantial wealth in three portions: one part as a donation to God, given to the Temple in Jerusalem; one part given to the poor; and one part to maintain their own household. Although happily married and wealthy, they were childless. This was a source of personal sadness for them, but also of public reproach, for some particularly nasty, nosy neighbors erroneously judged their being childless as divine punishment for some past sin. St AnneAlthough the rumors were false, Joachim left his wife and home and retired to a shepherd’s hut in the wilderness, where he began to fast and do penance for anything he might have done to offend God. The Archangel Gabriel visited Joachim and told him to return to his wife. At the same time, an angel visited the grieving Anne and instructed her to trust in God and to go out of the city to meet her returning husband. The two met at the Golden Gate leading into Jerusalem, where they embraced, kissed and re-affirmed their love for God and for each other. Soon after, even though advanced in years, Anne conceived a child in the usual way that all human children are conceived, but with one significant difference: Mary was conceived without the stain of Adam’s Original Sin, which we are all born with. Why? Because God prepared her for her special work role. Mary was spared Adam’s Original Sin in light of the future merits of Her Divine Son. She who would join human flesh to the Eternal Son of God in her womb, was spared the taint of Adam’s sin from the moment she was conceived in the womb of her mother, Saint Anne. We are freed from Adam’s sin in Baptism.

The devotion to Saints Joachim and Anne has been very strong here at Saint John’s since the founding of the parish. In fact, the banner hanging from the pulpit this weekend is the oldest banner the parish possesses, dating from the 1880’s, when this church was completed. It shows Saint Anne teaching her daughter, Mary, to read Scripture. Paintings of Saints Joachim and Anne were created during the interior repainting of the basilica: they are in the north transept [left of the altar], to the right of the large stained glass window.

Please pray to Saints Joachim and Anne for your family and for the families of the parish. The relics of Saint Anne and Joachim are displayed on the Blessed Mother’s Altar. This holy couple changed human history by their faith in God and fidelity to their marriage, even in times of difficulty and doubt. Their perseverance and trust in God brought forth their longed-for child, Our Lady, who became the mother of Jesus, whose death and resurrection destroyed the power of sin and death. Imitate their love for the Lord, their fidelity to each other, and their teaching and forming their child in the faith. Teach your children in the same way–and change history, for the better, by coming closer to Our Lord, and by imitating Him. —-Msgr. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick: Agnes Allen, Joyce Considine, Laureen Keenan, Bonnie and Dorothy Keyes, Billy Therriault, Thomas Bernie, Ruth Coyle, Jacqueline Domingue, John Palumbo, Kristine Barron, Silvana Smith, Lena Cocchia, Sr. Anne-Marguerite, Christina Samon Ta-Chu, Pasqualina Bruzzese, Nancy Gallagher, Megan Bobroske, Connor Walsh.

Please pray for those who have recently died: Theodore Scheidel, Jr., Lucy Zabatta Carrigan, Ellen Green Tully, Thomas Hogan, James Capodanno, Bronislawa (Betty) Balutowski, Wisler Nau, Liliana Pappa, Elinor Zarimski, Amelia DeDomenici, Jessica Rybnick Fleckenstein, Jeanette Pavia, Maryann Cornelio, Ernest Szechenyi, Virginia Donaghue, Ann R. DiGiovanni.

Co-Operative Mission Collection . . . Please drop your Co-operative Mission Collection envelope into the ONE basket that will be passed at the Offertory. There will only be one collection today.

Our Lady’s Altar Votive Light: In Thanksgiving.

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 21st.

Banns of Marriage:
III Banns: Michael Talarico and Krystal Collins.

St. Monica Latin Reading Group:
Wednesdays at 6:15 pm in the Rectory: resuming in 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 6:30pm. 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.

Attention Actors and Stage Managers. Fr. Audette is looking for actors and a production manager for a play he is directing – October opening: William Douglas Home’s, Lloyd George Knew My Father. Character parts and production manager are open. Please call Father Al at 203-733-5953. Rehearsals through the summer for presentation on October 23rd, 24th and 25th.

Gluten Free Hosts: Any one allergic to gluten, please know that we have gluten free hosts for Holy Communion. Please tell the priests about 15 minutes prior to the Mass you are attending that you prefer a gluten-free host for Holy Communion. He will prepare a gluten-free host for you in a separate receptacle called a pyx. When you come up to Holy Communion, please go the priest you spoke with before Mass: he’ll hand you the pyx so you may take the gluten-free host yourself and receive Holy Communion by your own hand. Since the priests will have been distributing Communion using the regular hosts, if they handled the gluten-free host, you might become ill if you were to consume any particle of the regular gluten hosts. Once you have received Holy Communion, hand the pyx back to the priest, or wait until after Mass and return it to him in the Sacristy, which is the door near the elevator.

Weekly Sunday collection:
Sunday July 13, 2014 $ 13,303.50
Sunday July 14, 2013 $ 11,408.49

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

July 27th, Sunday Readings: 1 Kgs 3:5, 7-12; Rom 8:28-30; Mt 13:44-52.

Annual Bishop’s Appeal: We made our goal: $109, 855.00 . We’ve made our goal, so we’re done! To all who donated, 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:, or Janet Lancaster: 203-637-3301, OR:

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: 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 groups/321733548424/ or email Mary at

Francis & Clare: Our High School Youth Group. Students interested in being part of the Teen Leadership Group contact Sue Kremheller, Director of Religious Education, by calling the Parish Office at 203 324 1553. Service Hours are available for those who have already been Confirmed. The 2014-2015 schedule will list the 2 Sunday nights each month.

RELIGIOUS EDUCATION: Please register now. Registration and payment can be made on our website, or in the office during the week. For more information, please call the parish secretary, 203-324-1553 x21.

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

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

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: or 203-866-1606: Next meeting: Monday, August 25th.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, July 19, 2014
4:00 +John Marini, Bob Bell and Ray Gerorski req. Leon Taricani
Sunday, July 20, 2014
7:30 People of the Parish
10:00 +John DeDomenici req. Debbie and Ed O’Malley
12:00 +Joseph and Effie Ramos req. Lilian and Alvina Ramos
5:00 +George B. Cooper
6:00 +Patrick Kane and Family req. Estate of Catherine Kane and Family
Monday, July 21, 2014
8:00 +Margretta DeVivo – 7th Anniversary req. DeVivo and Munro Families
12:10 +Angela Garcia req. Irsa Garcia Abrantes
Tuesday, July 22, 2014
8:00 Souls in Purgatory
12:10 +Kathleen Wink req. Joan Fitzgerald
Wednesday, July 23, 2014
8:00 +Winston Farrington req. Dewey Family
12:10 +Dolores Eisenman req. Dr. Joe McAleer
Thursday, July 24, 2014
8:00 +Thomas P. Leach
12:10 Virgin Caridad del Cobre req. Irsa Garcia Abrantes
Friday, July 25, 2014
8:00 +Tom Merrigan req. CJ and Cristina Fioravanti
12:10 Virgin de Ragla req. Irsa Garcia Abrantes
Saturday, July 26, 2014
8:00 Ucero Family req. Sharon Gannon
12:10 +Anthony, Derrick and Amiano Ramos req. Lilian and Alvina Ramos

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 meet in the Church each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30a.m. We will NOT BE MEETING on the 1st Tuesday in July or August, however alternate dates may be announced……

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. Meetings are held twice a month 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 spiritual formation of 7th-8thgrades-HighSchooler young men will resume in September.

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: summer meetings at a private home.

Coffee Hour. . .Starts again in September, after the 10:00 a.m. Family Mass in the Monsignor Nagle Parish Hall.

July 27, 1903: IN MEMORY OF POPE LEO.
“A Solemn High Mass of requiem for Pope Leo will be celebrated in St. John’s R.C. Church at 9:30
tomorrow. The celebrant will be Rev. Father Leddy and the assisting priests will be Fathers Sullivan, Flynn and Clyne. A sermon will be preached by Father O’Brien, and will dwell on the life and work of the late Pope.

Old Church

An interesting feature of the service will be the singing of Campanarri, the well-known grand-opera singer, who is spending the summer in Stamford. He is a member of the old Maurice Grau company, and has sung with much success in Bayreuth, Munich, and other European cities. His accompaniment will be played by Elmer T. Joyce, formerly organist at St. John’s. A catafalque is to be erected in the church, and there is to be a guard of honor about it, consisting of members of the Holy Name Society, the Knights of Columbus, and St. Joseph’s Temperance Society. The church has been draped in mourning for several days. At all the services yesterday a special prayer for the Pope was said. The service tomorrow will be of an impressive character, and will be of such interest to non-Catholics as well as to members of the church. A Solemn High Mass of requiem is one of the most solemn ceremonies in the church ritual, and then the singing of Campanarra will add very much to it. A general invitation is extended to Stamford people to be present. Mayor Leeds has given orders to have the city flag at half-mast during the day, as a mark of public honor to the Pope, and as in Stamford it will be the formal day of mourning.”

-Fr. Terry Walsh
My soul shall be filled as with a banquet, my mouth shall praise you with joy. –Psalm 63: vv
She had been a faithful communicant all her life. Christ had always been the center of her life. She shared every joy and every sorrow with Him in her daily prayer, especially at Holy Mass. Gazing upon the Sacred Host raised slightly above her as she lay in her hospital bed unable to leave the confines of the small corner of the room that she now called home, she wept tears of gratitude. She could no longer walk to Mass each day as was her custom well into her eighties in order to receive Him. Her eyes told the story: she knew that it was really Him. Hidden in the simple appearance of ordinary bread, Jesus Christ was staring back at her with love, just as He promised He would. What an amazing gift it is to live in the time of the Risen Christ. We encounter Him most profoundly in the Eucharist, where He remains substantially present, pouring Himself into us, filling us with His love. “The most august sacrament is the blessed Eucharist, in which Christ the Lord himself is contained, offered and received, and by which the Church continually lives and grows. The Eucharistic Sacrifice, the memorial of the death and resurrection of the Lord, in which the Sacrifice of the cross is forever perpetuated, is the summit and the source of all worship and Christian life. By means of it the unity of God’s people is signified and brought about, and the building up of the body of Christ is perfected. The other sacraments and all the ecclesiastical works of the apostolate are bound up with, and directed to the blessed Eucharist”(Code of Canon Law, 897).

Do you think the people living before the Incarnation could have ever imagined such a gift? And yet, it seems our Lord was preparing the world to understand the depth of His love. Consider the words of the Old Testament prophet Habakkuk: “His brightness was like the light, rays flashed from his hand; and there he veiled his power”(3:4). Habakkuk sings the praises of the mercy of the Holy One, whose glory covers the heavens and the earth. Indeed, Habakkuk seems to be describing Christ, the Light of the World, veiled under the mere appearances of bread and wine in Holy Eucharist. Likewise, the Saints offer amazing spiritual insights concerning the efficacy of graces emanating from the tiny Host. For instance, in The Dialogue, St. Catherine of Siena receives a clearer understanding concerning the effect the Eucharist has in the person who receives Him faithfully: “Just as the fish is in the sea and the sea is in the fish, so am I in the soul and the soul in me, the sea of peace.” This peace is precisely what that humble, frail woman in the convalescent home experienced that day she beheld our Lord coming to her to fulfill her spiritual hunger. It is the same peace experienced by the Saints throughout the centuries. (Read John 14)

During his conversion, the Real Presence of Christ in the Blessed Sacrament simply overwhelmed St Augustine. He could hardly contain his joyful gratitude when he wrote: “Meanwhile you (Jesus) overcame the weakness of my vision, sending forth most strongly the beams of your light, and I trembled at once with love and dread. I learned that I was in a region unlike yours and far distant from you, and I thought I heard your voice on high: ‘I am the food of grown men; grow then, and you will feed on me. Nor will you change me into yourself like bodily food, but you will be changed into me’.”(Confessions). We too are called to approach the Altar of the Lord with that same spiritual maturity – Awe and Wonder – that only Jesus Christ can satisfy. While we gain infinite graces in receiving Communion, we likewise receive tremendous graces when we come to adore Him in the Eucharist. What humility! Our Lord yearns for our love. He waits for us in the Tabernacle, hoping we will come to visit Him. Millions and millions of souls throughout time longed to have what we have. We can sit with Him. Imagine it! He is truly there – humbly confined in the Host for love of us. Yet, do we visit Him? In the Diary, St. Faustina records a mystical encounter with Christ, who spoke to her about indifference: “But souls do not even pay any attention to Me; they leave Me to Myself and busy themselves with other things. Oh, how sad I am that souls do not recognize Love! They treat Me as a dead object”(Diary, Article 1385). I remember vividly the words of Msgr. Charlie Elmer, spiritual director at the North American College, when he was speaking with my class about Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. He said quite simply: “Adoration is the perfect prayer.” While his words were clear and succinct, it was really the way he said them that struck me. The expression on his 80 year old face spoke volumes – it was the face of a man who had been a priest for 50 years – the face of a man who had landed on the beaches of Normandy on D-Day. His words hung in the air for a few moments. We just sort of gazed at him and considered how Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament had formed this faithful priest. As he gazed back at us, his countenance almost suggested that there was nothing else he wanted to say. His elderly gaunt face told the tale. It was as if he were saying to us, without words, that there simply were no words to describe that “Perfect Prayer”. At the same time, it was as if he were giving us a word to the wise: “You must stay close to the Master at all times. You must sit with Him. You must stay awake. Allow him to strengthen you, to nourish you, to teach you – simply by placing yourselves in the Presence of the Blessed Sacrament.” It was as if he spoke these words with his eyes. Adoration is necessary for all of God’s children. Msgr. Elmer really didn’t need to say anymore than he did: “Adoration is the perfect prayer.” After all, he was merely echoing the words of all the Saints who shared his understanding. When we come to adore our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, we are making a great act of faith and love. We are being spiritually enriched in a Mysterious way. We are fulfilling the words of our Lord who beckons us to union with him in a living faith. He will fill us with His peace and we will grow rich in faith.
“Adoration is the first act of the virtue of religion. To adore God is to acknowledge him as God, as the Creator and Savior, the Lord and Master of everything that exists, as infinite and merciful Love. ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve’ says Jesus, citing Deuteronomy 6:4-5.” – Catechism 2096