For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link: Bulletin for Sunday June 21, 2015

Pastor’s Corner. . As you read this, Rome will see my smiling face as part of its daily routine only 9 days more. My few belongings in four small boxes were shipped last month, and have arrived safely at 279 Atlantic Street. Most of the clothing remaining with me is older, and I’ll donate it to the Italian version of Goodwill. That means I’ll board my plane on June 30th with nothing more than one carry-on bag.

At the end of ten months of research and writing, I am happy to report that the first draft of the modern history of the Pontifical North American College has been completed. It is a large book, and the totals are interesting:

377 pages, 1,399 footnotes, 180,540 words.

It’s big, which a first draft should be. My work over the summer months will be to rewrite the draft, paring down the dead weight, rendering this verbal tonnage down to a more manageable size and readable length. Then, it will be sent down to Cardinal Dolan, who is the originator of this project, and then off to the publisher—just in time to serve as a Christmas stocking stuffer!

The book treats of an interesting period of the Church’s life: 1955-1979, and looks at the world-altering events of those years, both ecclesiastical and secular. Events such as the Second Vatican Council, as well as non-religious events, like the assassination of John F. Kennedy, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, and Robert F. Kennedy, the Vietnam War, the cultural and sexual revolutions affected all American educational institutions, even those training American young men who entered the North American College at that time. The number of men ordained in the College during those years of study totals an astounding 1,081 priests. Just as today, the American students of 1955-1979 who were sent by their American bishops to study in Rome were young, bright, and energetic. Today the College is home to 259 Americans, all studying for the priesthood to serve in various dioceses around the United States; to this number will be added 81 more young men in September.

The North American College was founded by Blessed Pope Pius IX in 1859, and re-established after World War II in 1946 by Pope Pius XII. It is not a college as we have in the United States, like UCONN, which provides all the classes necessary to obtain a college undergraduate degree. The North American College in Rome is a European style college: it is a place of residence. There are no classes. All classes are taken in various universities around Rome. The College is a residence, but one that also prepares men to live and work as priests, with spiritual direction and training in counseling and in the celebration of Mass and the sacraments. Also, the men studying at the North American have all completed their college undergraduate work before coming to Rome. They are graduate and post-graduate students, most of whom study at Pontifical Gregorian University, established by Saint Ignatius Loyola in 1551. The “Greg”, as we call it, numbers popes and saints among its graduates! While I am numbered among those same graduates, for both a licentiate and doctorate in Church History, I’m not yet a pope or saint. But, you never know.

My seminary years at the College were 1973-1978, and coincide with this study. For that reason, this has been a very interesting few months, reading about classmates and faculty priests I lived with, and events that took place while I was here. It has been fun. But, it is definitely time to return home to 279.

During these last days, I will revisit some of the shrines and tombs of the Apostles and Saints to pray for all of you, the parishioners of Saint John’s. That being said, I look forward ardently to returning home where I belong. So, please say a prayer that these last days fly by, and the plane remains in the sky until the schedule moment of descent at JFK. I’ll see you on the weekend of July 4th.
God bless you. – Monsignor DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick: Nancy Gallagher, Loy Mulyagonja, Ben Castle, Jay Olnek, Catherine Olnek, Lena Cocchia, Alexandre Laurent, Louise Morello, John MacLean, John Murray, Karyl Suzanne Bearden, Nellie Taylor-Boltrek, Kevin O’Byrne, Barbara Itri, Victoria Campos, Ro Clarke, Suzanne DePreta, Rita Timon, Billy Therriault, Thomas Bernie, Diane Grant, Marie Augustin, Mary Churley, Mary Bauer, Mary Rose Bauer, Paul Cavalli, Maggie Ward, Sr. Anne-Marguerite, Peter Monks, Agnes Allen, Bonnie and Dorothy Keyes, Ruth Coyle, John Palumbo, Silvana Smith.

Please pray for those who have recently died: Jeanne Loughlin, Barbara Wolf, Dominick Franco Sr., Barbara Rizzi, Joseph H. Dervil, Elaine Marie Breunich, Patrick Timon, Thomas Mardi, Alfred Candito, Sr., Mable Lewis, Linda DePreta, Theresa Deluca, Josephine Melfi, Mary Lou Kerr, Madeline Preziosi, Cardinal Edward M. Egan, Suzanne Demonchaux.

Monthly Collection . . . The second collection today will be the monthly collection for the parish. Your generosity is appreciated.

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 22nd.

Our Lady’s Altar Votive Light: Special Intentions Dr. George Szele

Over 100 Benefits of Eucharistic Adoration: #21 – It is our duty to adore the Blessed Sacrament. No one receives the Blessed Sacrament unless he adores it … and not only do we not sin by adoring, we do sin but not adoring. (St. Augustine)

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. Call the rectory for information.

RCIA: Classes: Tuesdays, 7:00PM in the rectory. Open to anyone interested in becoming a Catholic, or adult Catholics wanting to receive 1st Communion or Confirmation (call 324-1553) Special Needs RCIA: Contact Michelle O’Mara at 203 540 5381 ext. 2012.

St. Monica Latin Reading Group: Thursdays at 12:45 in the Rectory. We are beginning this Fall’s meetings with a review of Ecclesiastical Latin using Latin Grammar by Cora and Charles Scanlon. A basic reading ability in Latin is necessary. Please call the Rectory for information.

Annual Bishop’s Appeal: Has begun. Saint John’s goal, set by the diocese, is $110,000. The funds collected for the Bishop are used for the numerous charitable and educational works of the Diocese. We have collected to date: $72,285.00. Please be generous; we need everyone’s help.

Famous British Catholic Boys Choir to sing at St John the Evangelist: The Schola Cantorum, the renowned boys choir of The Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School in London, England, is to sing a concert at St John the Evangelist at 7 pm on Thursday 2 July.  Cardinal Vaughan is one of the most famous Catholic Schools in the UK and the school’s choir is highly regarded for its fine singing, often heard at London’s Westminster Cathedral and Westminster Abbey. You may have already heard the boys sing without realising as their voices are also heard on many movie soundtracks – recent films on which they have sung include the Harry Potter series, Paddington, Life of Pi and The Age of Adaline. The boys also sing in the chorus at London’s Royal Opera House.  On this trip the Schola are performing in four US cities, Milwaukee, Cincinnati, New York and the concert here in Stamford on 2 July when they will perform a varied program of beautiful sacred music. Entrance is free.

Weekly Sunday collection:
Sunday June 14, 2015 $12,374.00
Sunday June 15, 2014 $ 10,074.60

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 28th, Sunday Readings: Wis 1:13-15; 2:23-24; 2 Cor 8:7, 9, 13-15; Mk 5:21-43.

Baptism/Confirmation Sponsorship Certificate: When asked to be a sponsor, a certificate is needed from your home parish. If the parish priest does not know you personally, or by sight, the only other way of knowing you as a practicing catholic is by tracking your contributions by check or envelope.

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

Saint John’s School Reunion. A committee is organizing a reunion for all who attended St. Johns School over Columbus Day week-end, October 10-11th 2015. If you attended, or know anyone who did, please e-mail the following information to or call (203) 325-3128 and leave a message (please speak slowly and clearly). Full name (including maiden name), e-mail, phone, mailing address, year graduated or left SJS, and if you would like to join the committee. Alumni should go to Facebook and search “St. John’s School Alumni, Stamford” and Like the page. Please pass this information on to anyone you know who may have attended: siblings, parents, cousins, aunt and uncles, grandparents, friends.

Celebration Mass of SYNOD 2014 – Saturday, September 19, 2015 @ 11:00 AM At the Webster Area at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport, Connecticut.
Bishop Frank Caggiano cordially invites you to join 9,000 faithful throughout the diocese for Mass, Music and Thanksgiving. Doors will open at 9:00 AM with Praise and Worship music and the debut of the new Diocesan Youth Choir.
IMPORTANT CHANGE: The Bishop will allow your personal cars to this event. You will now have the option to drive. If you choose to drive, you must register and secure your ticket of entry by August 15, 2015 through the Eventbrite link ( (Please note that parking will be tight and that some late arrivals may not be able to park on the arena groups). The Basilica of St. John‘s will still have bus transportation to this event. Please secure your seat on the bus and free entry ticket by July 31, 2015. For additional information or to secure your bus seat/ticket, please email Frank Carpanzano at

Stamford: A Small Town Remembers: A production of Michael Macari and EVTV in association with The Stamford Historical Society Wednesday, July 8, 2015 7:30PM at The Avon Theatre, 272 Bedford Street, Stamford.  A Q & A with the producers and other special guests will be held immediately following the showing.  Seating to benefit the Stamford Historical Society $12/general; $10/seniors; $7/Avon Members. Guests are urged to reserve general seating by calling the Avon Box Office during show times at box office at 203-967-3660 x2.  For more information, contact 203-329-1183.

Job Seekers: 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: This Monday, June 22nd 7:30PM Location: Cosi at 230 Tresser Blvd., Stamford (in front of the Stamford Mall).

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, June 20, 2015
4:00 +Charles and Josephine Davis req. Joseph Melfi
Sunday, June 21, 2015
7:30 +Charles Wistuba req. Douglas Dewey
10:00 +Frances Delaney Birthday Remembrance req. Family
12:00 Pray for the opening of the cause of Ignatius Cardinal Kung req. Cardinal Kung Foundation
5:00 +Fr. Peter M. Rinaldi, SDB
6:00 +Patrick Kane and Family req. Estate of Catherine Kane and Family
Monday, June 22, 2015
8:00 +Juana Mazariegos req. Blanca M. Reyes
12:10 +Federico Garcia req. Aurea Garcia
Tuesday, June 23, 2015
8:00 Special Intentions Loy Mulyagonja req. Scholastica and Andrew
12:10 +Alfred J. Amour req. Tom and Olga Kolenberg
Wednesday, June 24, 2015
8:00 In Honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary req. Montanise Paulemon
12:10 +Charles and Matthew Austin req. parents
Thursday, June 25, 2015
8:00 +Edward Malin req. Patricia Grew
12:10 +Margarite Futie req. Tom and Olga Kolenberg
Friday, June 26, 2015
8:00 +Joe Richichi req. Tom and Olga Kolenberg
12:10 Special Intentions Barbara Itri req. Rosemary Drexel
Saturday, June 27, 2015
8:00 +Wladek and Willemina Falek req. daughter
12:10 Thanksgiving to St. Rita req. Diane Strain

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.

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. Maria Goretti Society & St. Dominic Savio Society: For the spiritual formation of young ladies and men, 6th-8thgrades. For more info. Please contact Anne Marie, or 203-324-1553, x21.

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: Thursday afternoons in the rectory: basic reading ability required. Please call the rectory for information.

Intermediate Studies in Biblical Greek: Intermediate Grammar: Thursday evenings at 6:30 pm in a private home. Please call the office for more information.

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:

145 years ago, or so:
June 28, 1872: “Rev. Father Fagan and his congregation desire to return their thanks to J. D. Candee, Esq., for his courtesy in throwing open his beautiful grounds, that the procession of the Right Rev. Bishop and clergy might more readily pass around the church, on the occasion of laying the corner stone.” (EDITOR’S NOTE: Julius Candee, Esq., was the original owner of the property that is now St. John’s Rectory.)

125 years ago, or so:
June 27, 1890: The Flag of the Free. “On the morning of July 4th the Cecilian Society will present a flag to St. John’s R. C. school. The pole presented by the society is said to be a very fine one, nearly as large as the flag pole in Central Park, and about 60 feet high. The exercises will commence at 9 a.m. according to the following program:
Chorus—”Red, White and Blue,” Pupils of St. John School
The American Flag…………. Miss M. Kenealy
Star Spangled Banner……….. Cecilian Society
Patriotism……………………..Rev. T. J. Keena
“Stars & Stripes of Columbia”..Cecilian Society
Presentation of the Flag……….M. Hayes
Acceptance of the Flag………..Rev. W. H. Rogers
“E Pluribus Unum”……………Cecilian Society.
Tableau—Goddess of Liberty…Miss L. Mahoney
The ceremonies will close with grand instrumental selections by St. John’s Cornet Band, after which the societies in attendance will march to the St. John’s picnic at Woodside Park, where there will be bicycle racing, horse trotting, foot racing and a base ball game. There will also be arrangements for dancing.”

40 years ago, or so:
June 24, 1977: Father DiGiovanni To Be Ordained In Bridgeport Church This Saturday. “Bishop Walter W. Curtis will ordain Stephen M. DiGiovanni to the priesthood for the Diocese of Bridgeport in St. Raphael’s Church here this Saturday, June 25, at 10 A.M. Father DiGiovanni is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Walter DiGiovanni of 65 Rena Place, Fairfield. A graduate of Andrew Warde High School, Fairfield, he took his seminary studies at St. Thomas, Bloomfield; St. Mary’s, Baltimore; and the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome. He is currently a candidate for a Licentiate in Ecclesiastical History at the Gregorian University. Father DiGiovanni will celebrate a Mass of Thanksgiving in St. Catherine of Siena Church, Riverside, this Sunday, June 26, at 12 Noon.”

Behold your Mother (The Tree of Life)
– Fr Terry Walsh

“God the Father gathered all the seas together and called them the seas or maria. He gathered all his grace together and called it Mary, or Maria… ‘the treasury of the Lord’.”
–St. Louis DeMontfort

Atop the great oak doors of the Basilica of St. John the Evangelist rests the Coat of Arms which greets us with the words our Lord uttered from the Cross and leads us to reflect upon the role of Mary in the sanctification of our souls. As he gazed upon the beloved disciple from the Cross, Jesus said: “Behold your Mother.” Indeed, he is saying the same to us. Some moments later, Blood and Water gushed from his Sacred Heart, torn open by the soldier’s lance. Jesus emptied himself in the greatest act of love ever known. Contemplating His perfect sacrifice, we approach the Altar and our gaze quite naturally is drawn to the Stained glass window above the High Altar: Consummatum Est: “It is Finished.” There we contemplate the pain and sorrow endured by our Blessed Mother. John, also grieving, comforts Mary. Our Lady consented to the immolation of her Son for our sake, just as she consented to his Incarnation according to the will of God – for our sake.

As we consider the Incarnation, we turn our gaze to the side chapel of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and meditate on the magnificent scene of the Annunciation so beautifully depicted in the Window. There we see Mary kneeling in prayer, reflecting upon the word of God. Through her Fiat, her willingness to become the Mother of our Lord, the Blessed Virgin Mary becomes the Mother of Grace. Indeed, the image in the window depicts the Living Waters of sanctifying grace flowing from God, through Mary, going out to water the souls of all who come to believe. Jesus said, “If any one thirst, let him come to me and drink. He who believes in me, as the scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart shall flow living water’”(John 7: 37-38). Jesus promised that if we respond to the life giving waters of eternal life and abide in his love, the Holy Trinity would reside in us, that is, “The Kingdom of God is within.” Thus, the living waters necessary for our salvation actually well up from within us to heal and nourish our souls with the Gifts of the Holy Spirit: Wisdom, Understanding, Knowledge, Counsel, Fortitude, Piety, and Fear of the Lord. Indeed, we receive every gift and blessing necessary for salvation. St. Louis DeMontfort explains, “God the Son imparted to his mother all that he gained by his life and death, namely his infinite merits and his eminent virtues…She is his mystic channel, his aqueduct, through which he causes his mercies to flow gently and abundantly”(True Devotion, 24). The Gospel of John provides such beautiful images and spiritual insights that enable us to see the depth of the love of God. What a wonderful influence the Blessed Virgin Mary had upon the beloved disciple during the years they lived together following the Ascension of our Lord: the conversations they would have had concerning the life of Jesus; the graces John would have received through Mary’s intercession for him. Among the four Evangelists, the Gospel of John is the most spiritual account of the life, death, and Resurrection of Jesus. Beautiful images of Light and Water abound and lead us to a deeper understanding of the Presence of God in our souls. John recounts the compelling story of conversion of the woman at the well who came to receive the Living Waters and in turn joyfully watered the gardens of her neighbors through her new found faith. Just as Jesus spoke to the Samaritan woman, so too does he speak to us: “…whoever drinks of the water I shall give him will never thirst; the water that I shall give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life”(John 4:14). The choice is ours. On the one hand, we may choose to drink from the worldly waters that focus on the self and are attractive to the flesh. These waters bring immediate gratification, but at the cost of spiritual emptiness. Alternatively, we may choose to drink from the life-giving waters emanating from the wounded side of Christ. He pours them out to us every single day. These waters come to us most abundantly through the Sacraments and bring spiritual enrichment, gradually forming us into more perfect likenesses of Christ. These waters enable us to embrace our Cross and to offer the trials of life for the glory of God and the sanctification of our souls. In essence, our Cross becomes an opportunity to prove our love for the One who offered himself up for us. And just as our Lady stood by Jesus, so too does she accompany us. Recall the encouraging words of the prophet Jeremiah, “Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose hope is in the Lord. He is like a tree planted beside the waters that stretches out its roots to the stream: it fears not the heat when it comes; its leaves stay green; in the year of the drought it shows no distress, but still bears fruit”(Jeremiah 17:7-8). We come to the Basilica to enable the roots of our soul to spread wide and grow deep beside the Living waters of sacramental grace. Each sip moves us closer to Heaven by enabling us to accomplish the mission our Lord has given to each one of us: “Love one another as I have loved you.” The best path is traveled through our spiritual Mother. “If Mary, the Tree of Life, is well cultivated in our soul….she will in due time bring forth her fruit, which is none other than Jesus”(True Devotion, St. Louis DeMontfort, 218).