For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link: Bulletin for Sunday August 9, 2015

Pastor’s Corner: “Pray, hope and don’t worry. Worry is useless.
God is merciful and will hear your prayer.”
—Saint Padre Pio

Saint Padre Pio is a very generous saint. He is a priest, after all, so he knows the needs of his people. Because we all belong to the Body of Christ, the Catholic Church, as is Padre Pio, we are united with Saint Padre Pio through Christ.

An elderly religious brother and friend of mine, Brother Randal Riede, C.F.X., once wrote me: “We will meet daily in the Eucharist.” He meant what he wrote: daily, even if we are thousands of miles away from friends and family, at Mass we are united in Christ through His Body and Blood we receive in Holy Communion. Each time we are at Mass, Saint Padre Pio, the Blessed Mother, Saint John the Baptist, and all the angels and saints are present—as is God Himself. That means that the saints, always aware of our needs if we tell them, intercede for us—they are our friends in Heaven, and they speak to Our Lord on our behalf, since they stand daily before the Throne of God in Heaven.

I am asking everyone in the parish for another prayer favor. You may recall that while I was in Rome I asked you to pray for the success of a little mission I had organized. Two of our parishioners, Roberto and Margarita Ucero, who presently live in Mexico City, did me a favor and translated into Spanish the prayer for the opening of the Cause of Canonization for Cardinal Kung. Another parishioner, Greg Duffey, printed them up. Your prayers were answered, in that a few of those prayer cards in Spanish were handed to Pope Francis when he visited the North American College in Rome last May.

Now I’m again asking your prayers again. I have contacted friends who plan to hand more of those cards to the Holy Father during his September visit to Philadelphia and New York. NOW, I ask that you pray to Saint Padre Pio that the Holy Father will open the Cause of Canonization of Cardinal Kung. On Wednesday, September 23rd, the Feast day of Saint Padre Pio, Pope Francis will canonize Blessed Junipero Serra. On that day, here at Saint John’s beginning at 7:30 p.m., we will end our Triduum of Prayer honoring Saint Padre Pio. I ask that everyone in the parish offer a daily prayer to Saint Padre Pio that he intercede with Our Lord, that Pope Francis may open soon the Cause for Canonization of Cardinal Kung.

Here is a simple prayer we can recite everyday—beginning this weekend, and each day through September 23rd:

Saint Padre Pio, please pray that Cardinal Kung’s Cause be opened.

You can pray that when you’re at work, or driving, or before you go to bed: easy.

You may notice that on the Saint Joseph side Altar there is the photograph of Cardinal Kung. Saint Joseph is the patron saint of the Church in China. Last weekend I placed a parishioner’s gift at the feet of Saint Joseph: a beautiful mosaic of Saint Padre Pio. That is to remind us to ask for Saint Padre Pio’s help in this work: that he might pray for the Cardinal’s cause of canonization to be opened.

That is OUR parish project for the next two months. Please lend a hand. Cardinal Kung was a part of our parish, having lived in Stamford during the last years of his life with his nephew’s family, Joseph and Agnes Kung. His wake and funeral were held in our Basilica, and the Pope sent his personal representative here to demonstrate his deep respect and devotion for the elderly Cardinal who had been imprisoned for the Faith for over 30 years in China.

Let’s pray together daily asking Saint Padre Pio’s help. —Monsignor DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick: Mildred Beirne, Joe Brennan, Betty Brennan, Nancy Gallagher, Billy Therriault, Thomas Bernie, Loy Mulyagonja, Ben Castle, Jay Olnek, Catherine Olnek, Lena Cocchia, Alexandre Laurent, John MacLean, John Murray, Karyl Suzanne Bearden, Nellie Taylor-Boltrek, Kevin O’Byrne, Barbara Itri, Victoria Campos, Ro Clarke, Suzanne DePreta, Rita Timon, 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: Betty Fones, Philip C. Clark, Marie Gedeon, Edward J. Gill, Joseph Runio, Gary DeSalvo, 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.

August 15th: The Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary IS NOT a holy day obligation this year, because it falls on a Saturday. The usual Saturday Mass schedule will be observed.

WANT TO BE A CATHOLIC? OR, Or are you a Catholic who would like a refresher course in the Faith, or who never received First Holy Communion or Confirmation? These classes are for you.
Classes: Tuesdays, 7:30-9:00 p.m. in the Rectory, beginning in September. This is an eight week course of studies, that repeats throughout the year, so, if you miss a class or two, you can easily make them up. Please call the rectory for information (203-324-1553, ext. 21).
Special Needs Classes: Contact Michelle O’Mara at momara@stcatherineacademy.org 203 540 5381 ext. 2012.

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. Call the rectory for information.

The St. Monica Latin Reading Group: Meets on Thursday afternoons at 12:45 to read writings from the early Church and will resume meeting in September at a date to be announced. Newcomers are welcome. A basic reading ability in Latin is necessary. For more information, please call Saint John’s Rectory at 203-324-1553 Ext. 21.

Annual Bishop’s Appeal: 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: $98,071.00. Please be generous; we need everyone’s help.

Celebration Mass of SYNOD 2014–Saturday, September 19, 2015 @ 11:00 AM At the Webster Arena at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport. Bishop Frank Caggiano 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. If you choose to drive, you must register and secure your ticket of entry by August 15, 2015 through the Eventbrite link (www.2014synod.org/tickets). Last call – The deadline for the bus has been extended until August 9th. There are a few more seats available. Anyone interested in securing your seat on the bus (and a free ticket for entry) for the Synod Mass must e-mail Frank Carpanzano at fcarpanzano@advancetravel.com by the above date.

Weekly Sunday collection:

Sunday August 2, 2015 $ 11,863.00
Sunday August 3, 2014 $ 14,525.71

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

August 16th, Sunday Readings: Prv 9:1-6; Eph 5:15-20; Jn 6:51-58.

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 projectrachel@diobpt.org.

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 203 348-4355 or www.birthright.org.

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. Call the parish secretary (324-1553, ext. 21).

Saint John’s School Reunion. Columbus Day week-end, October 10-11, 2015. If you attended St. John’s School, or know someone who did, please e-mail your information to Erin.Cody@SunGard.com 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 planning 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.

Job Seekers: 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: August 24th 7:30PM Location: Cosi at 230 Tresser Blvd., Stamford (in front of the Stamford Mall).

MARK YOUR CALENDAR: September 21, 22 & 23: A Triduum of Prayer in honor of Saint Padre Pio: 7:30 p.m. each night in the Basilica, with Eucharistic Adoration & Benediction; a Sermon; Novena Prayers, and Veneration of the Relics of Saint Padre Pio. September 23rd is the Feast Day of Saint Padre Pio: 7:30 p.m. Triduum Prayers begin inside the Basilica, then, weather permitting, we will have an outdoor Solemn Eucharistic Procession, with Novena Prayers and Solemn Benediction at our outdoor Shrine of Padre Pio, followed by refreshments.
EVERYONE IS WELCOME!

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, August 8, 2015
4:00 Leon V. Taricani req. Mike Guarnieri
Sunday, August 9, 2015
7:30 +Arthur Q. Penta req. Armelle Penta
10:00 Deceased members of the Samedi Family req. Anne Marie Samedi
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, August 10, 2015
8:00 +Kathleen Martesen req. Paul Manfredi
12:10 +Felicitas Cody req. Mr. and Mrs. Darrell Ingram
Tuesday, August 11, 2015
8:00 +Vincenza Saglimbeni req. Mary Bridget Gaine
12:10 +Noemi Isidro req. daughters
Wednesday, August 12, 2015
8:00 +Doris McMahon req. Tom Timon
12:10 +Joseph and Rosemary McGuirk req. Mary Bridget Gaine
Thursday, August 13, 2015
8:00 +Viergelie and M. Lourdes Paulemon req. Montanise Paulemon
12:10 +Rocco Gesualdi req. Terenzio Family
Friday, August 14, 2015
8:00 +Joseph and Margaret Curtis req. Mary Maloney
12:10 +Charles and Matthew Austin req. parents
Saturday, August 15, 2015
8:00 +Hope and Joseph McAleer req. McAleer Family
12:10 + John Maloney req. Mary Maloney

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.

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

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 more information.

—Intermediate Biblical Greek: Intermediate Grammar: Thursday evenings at 6:30 pm in a private home. Please call Monsignor DiGiovanni for more information (203-324-1553, ext 11).

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 ADVOCATE:

110 years ago, or so:
August 15, 1903: ITALIANS CELEBRATING. “Local Italians who are Roman Catholics held a celebration today in honor of the festival of Maria Virginie Lassunta or the Assumption, as the feast is known, in English. It is observed as a Holy Day by Roman Catholics generally, but the Italians always celebrate it in an elaborate manner. A Solemn High Mass was held in St. John’s R. C. Church at 10:30, at which there was a large congregation, consisting mostly of Italians. The celebrant was Father Sullivan, who was assisted by Fathers Clyne and Flynn. Rev. Pasquale Monzelli of New Rochelle preached a sermon in Italian, which was heard with marked interest by his country people. Previous to the Mass, the Societies Campanella and Vittoria Emanuele, headed by the Barsagliere band of New York, had a parade. In it was an open carriage in which were ex-Mayors Tupper and Cummings, Selectman Looney and Supt. Of Public Works Arthur. Mayor Leeds was invited to ride, but declined. He says that he will drop in at Woodside Park this afternoon, to see how things are going along at the picnic. When the Mass was over about noon, there was a celebration outside the church in the shape of firecrackers. The parade again formed, and, after going through the principal streets, proceeded to Woodside Park. An interesting program has been arranged for the picnic. There will be races and a baseball game, this afternoon, and this evening there will be a display of fireworks. There will be a band concert from 4 to 5, and dancing afternoon and evening.”

65 years ago, or so:
August 15, 1950: Pope To Proclaim Mary’s Ascension New Church Law. “Pope Pius has called a secret consistory to make belief in the bodily assumption of the Virgin Mary into heaven a dogma of the Catholic Church, it was announced yesterday. The dogma will be the first added to the doctrine of the church in nearly 100 years. The last was that of the Immaculate Conception proclaimed on Dec. 8, 1854. L’Osservatore Romano, Vatican City newspaper, made the announcement on the eve of the Feast of the Assumption—today—which has been observed by Catholics for centuries. L’Osservatore Romano said the Secret Consistory of Cardinals has been called for Oct. 30, and that Pope Pius will proclaim the dogma on Nov. 1 on the closing day of an International Marian Congress in Rome. Thousands devoted especially to the Virgin Mary, Mother of Jesus, then will be assembled from all parts of the world for one of the most important events of the 1950 Holy Year. The delegates are bringing thousands of statues of the Virgin, some of them from the world’s most noted shrines. Pope Pius, will speak “Ex Cathedra.”.”

God Prepares My Heart

-Fr. Andy Vill

(Story continued from last week’s bulletin)
One week after returning from the Steubenville youth conference, a friend of mine asked me to join him to pray for a friend of his who was sick. He told me to meet him at the perpetual adoration chapel at St. Mary Parish in Ridgefield where I had been going to youth group. I had lived in Ridgefield my whole life and never knew about this chapel. You mean to tell me that there is a chapel open 24/7 with Eucharistic Adoration? I just had my conversion moment and received the grace to believe in the True Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist and I can adore Him whenever I want? What a gift! What a blessing!

I worked that summer as an intern at Pitney Bowes in Danbury, CT and got a taste of life as an engineer. I had been accepted at UCONN and was planning to attend the Stamford campus in the fall for my freshman year before transferring to the main campus in Storrs as a sophomore. As I worked in engineering I enjoyed it well enough, but I couldn’t really see myself being fulfilled and happy working as an engineer for the next forty years of my life. I felt like I was called to something greater.

In the fall semester I assisted on the adult core team for the youth group at St. Mary’s on Sunday nights. I stayed involved in the Emmaus community and helped on an Emmaus weekend in September. Fr. Nick whom I had met in the spring returned to be the chaplain for that weekend. I began to go to confession regularly. I remember looking forward to Sundays because it meant that I could go to Mass again, I could be a part of my community of Catholic friends again.

While I attended UCONN Stamford I worked over on West Broad Street at the American Institute for Foreign Study in database marketing, calling students who were interested in spending a semester abroad. I told myself that I would never want to do that myself; “Live outside of the USA? I’m all set thanks.” (God’s plans would turn out otherwise.) Every night on my way home from work, I would arrive in Ridgefield at about 8:30pm and stop in the adoration chapel to pray for a half hour. On Thursdays I joined the rosary group, other nights I would pray in silence. I was asking myself (more than really praying to God), “What do I want to do with my life?”

On Halloween, my friend Jon was dragged along to go trick-or-treating with his girlfriend. High School girls could get away with trick-or-treating; college aged guys could not. Jon convinced me to join him and, while his girlfriend rang doorbells in search of candy, he and I spoke about the beauty of the faith and our attraction to the priesthood. Jon had had his conversion on the same Emmaus weekend as I back in February of that year. He too was helping out with the Emmaus retreats. “Wouldn’t it be great,” we said to each other, “to be able to preach the Gospel and baptize like the apostles did; to forgive sins and bring people back to God!” Jon was convinced that he wanted to marry his girlfriend one day; I also was hoping to find a girl to marry. Our solution? We’d be permanent deacons one day! We only have to wait until we are thirty-five to be ordained. We’d each be happily married with children by then, right?

In all of this time God was preparing my heart for a great gift. In the silence of prayer He was stirring into a flame the fire of His love. He was drawing me closer to himself. It wouldn’t be long before that gift would be revealed to me in a profound way. Stay tuned for next week’s bulletin to discover how God would finally call me to be His priest.