For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link: Bulletin for Sunday April 2, 2017 Cross

Pastor’s Corner: This Sunday ushers in the period of Passiontide. Our attention is centered entirely upon the sacrificial and redeeming aspects of Jesus’ life and ministry: Jesus’ Passion and suffering, death on the Cross, spiritual descent into hell, and His bodily resurrection from the grave are as so many moments in His conflict with Satan, and in His triumph over death. To underscore this, all statues are covered: the Church wears her “widow’s weeds”, as it were: she begins to mourn, and allows nothing to distract her from fixing her attention on the sacrificial death of Her Bridegroom, Jesus the Lord. The only image of the Crucified Lord is that dominating the Basilica, above the high altar, along with the Stations of the Cross along the walls, to assist in our personal meditation, literally walking to Calvary with Our Lord from Station to Station.

The meaning of the Cross had been expressed clearly in the New Testament, especially in the Letter to the Hebrews and the four Gospels. By the early fourth century these truths became more popularly expressed, especially after the rediscovery in Jerusalem of the True Cross upon which Jesus died —it had been buried and preserved beneath the temple to Jupiter, built in the 2nd century by the Roman Emperor Hadrian specifically atop the place of Our Lord’s death at Calvary in an attempt to destroy Christ’s Church.

Why a veneration of the Cross? Because the Cross is the instrument of our salvation, and the throne of Christ’s glorious victory over Satan and death. The ancient Holy Thursday Eucharistic hymn, Pange Lingua, expresses this: “Sing, my tongue, the glorious battle; over the trophy of the Cross, proclaim the noble triumph; tell how the Redeemer of the world won victory through His sacrifice. The Creator looked on sadly as the first man, Adam, was deceived, and as he fell into the snare of death, taking a bite of a lethal fruit; it was then that God chose this blessed piece of wood [the Cross] to destroy the other tree’s curse. You alone, O Cross, have been worthy to carry the ransom of the world; mankind’s ship had gone down beneath the waves, but you opened the way to our port of rescue. For you, O Cross, are anointed with the sacred blood which sprung forth from the body of the Lamb [Jesus].”

Our Basilica is blessed in many ways. One blessing stands out in my mind as we approach the holiest time of the year, Holy Week: the parish has a Relic of the True Cross, splinters of the actual wooden Cross upon which hung Our Savior, Jesus Christ. It was a gift a few years ago, and fully documented, set in a beautiful 18th century Flemish reliquary. You may have noticed that the door of the tabernacle on the Saint Joseph side altar is missing: I removed it, and replaced it with an unbreakable plexi-glass door set in a brass frame, which locks. The small tabernacle is now the Shrine of the Holy Cross: a permanent reliquary of the True Cross. The Prayer before the Crucifix is on the rail which you can pray: a meditation to Jesus, Crucified.

Spend some time there during this week—Holy Week, meditating on Christ’s generous sacrifice to save you from eternal death: repent of your sins, go to Confession, and join in the
2017 Holy Week services at the Basilica:
Spy Wednesday, April 12th at 8 pm — Tenebrae, a chanted scriptural service; continuing on
Holy Thursday, April 13th at 8 pm — the Mass of the Lord’s Supper and adoration; an on
Good Friday, April 14th at 3pm — the Liturgy of the Passion of the Lord, and on
Holy Saturday, April 15th at 8pm — the Easter Vigil.

Join us on those days and enter more deeply into our meditation of God’s great love for you that led Him to become man, to suffer on the Cross and rise from the dead for you. —Monsignor DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick: Isaac Lopez, Richard Ridge, Debbie Schemmel, Ron Frasca, Lisa Giugno, Michele Giugno, Helga Pecaric, Kimberly Rice, Jimmy Berube, Maria Travino, Maria Gabriela Mossa, Anne Touhey, Bill Rice, Diane DiNapoli, Gayle Moore, Paula Bennett, Mildred Beirne, Karen Hsu, Silvana Smith, Harriet Lockhart, Joseph Kung, Jacqueline Domingue, Eilish Collins Main, Antonietta Cerone, Sylvia Iannazzi, A.J. Barr, William Byrnes, Jonathan Victor, Sophia Petrafesa, Lyn Geikie-Rice, Ruth Coyle, Elaine Shoztic.

Please pray for those who have recently died: Barbara Itri, Daniel Murphy, Bernadette Martelli, John Thompson, Francesco Russo, Lillian Jacobs, Rosalie Liguori, William DeLeo, Sylvia Ardise, Rosemary Pavia Grasso, Walter Bradley, Paul Hughes, Paul Polotaye, Joyce Simoneau Rybnick.

REMINDER: There will be no 5 pm Mass on Easter Sunday [April 16th].

Eaglet THE EAGLE: IS RETURNING—sort of!! With our own Dr. Joseph McAleer at the helm, we will soon launch our parish blog: THE EAGLET. This will be a new web incarnation of The Eagle, in the form of a weekly article in a blog format, to stimulate the mind and spirit and provoke discussion of issues pertaining to our Catholic Faith and Church. Get ready to join the conversation! Stay tuned for further details.

The Sacrament of the Sick: One of the seven instituted by Our Lord, relieves the sick person by opening up the reality of God’s mercy, offering strength for the patient to endure any suffering without despairing. Please do NOT wait until a friend or family member is about to die before calling one of the parish priests for this sacrament or for Holy Communion to be brought to your home, hospital or nursing home.

The Lenten rules of fasting and abstinence from eating meat: Fasting refers to the cutting back on the amount of food eaten on Good Friday [April 14], and applies to those aged 14-60 years old, unless ill or suffering from a medical condition. Abstinence means that we abstain from eating meat—no meat on all Fridays of Lent and on Good Friday. If one is ill, 60 years or older, or suffers from any medical condition, these rules do not apply.

Relic of the True Cross: Splinters of the actual Cross upon which Our Lord suffered and died are displayed on the Saint Joseph side altar. Copies of Prayer before the Crucifix are provided for your devotion.

Saturday, May 6 at 4-7:00 pm: The Kentucky Derby fundraiser in the Rectory.

Saturday, May 13 at 5-7:00 pm: St. John’s in World War I Exhibit in the parish hall.

May 13 at 7:30-9:00 pm: Solemn Rosary, Benediction and Procession marking the
centenary of the apparitions of Our Lady at Fatima.

June 13, July 13, August 13, September 13, & October 13: 7:30 pm: Rosary in honor of Our Lady of Fatima during this centenary year.

Men of the Parish [ages 18 and up]: Looking for a spiritual boost for Lent—with coffee? Every Friday morning, about 30 men of the parish meet in the Rectory at 7 a.m. for coffee, then join together for twenty minutes of prayer and Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament: all completed in time to attend the 8 a.m. Mass or to go off to work. All parish men are welcome: 18 years of age and up. Just walk in the Rectory front door, go down the hall, and you’ll find the coffee.

Stations of the Cross: Fridays during Lent at 4:00pm in English, but NOT on Good Friday [April 14].

Weekly Sunday collection:

Sunday March 26, 2017 $ 13,549.90
Sunday March 27, 2016 $ 12,523.89

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

April 9th, Sunday Readings: Is 50:4-7; Phil 2:6-11; Mt 26:14—27:66.

Police: As policemen and women are under attack throughout the country, we ask that you Please remember the members of our Stamford Police Department in your prayers. Likewise, remember in your prayers members of Stamford’s EMS and Fire Department, and our military women and men who protect our nation.

Annual Catholic Appeal: This is the annual appeal by the Diocese of Bridgeport to fund all the charitable, educational, and faith-based works of the Diocese of Bridgeport that assist thousands of people daily throughout Fairfield County. Each parish in Fairfield County is given a goal: ours is $110,000. We have collected to date: $73,522.00 or 67%. Please be generous; we need everyone’s help. Our parish Appeal leaders are John & Eileen Tarleton, who have led our efforts last year so successfully. Thank you for your generosity.

Project Rachel Ministry: Offers free and confidential help to those seeking healing after abortion. Come back to God’s love and mercy. 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 203-348-4355 or

Help End Legalized Abortion: Abortions take place daily at Stamford’s Planned Parenthood, 35 Sixth Street. Help us stop this. To join us, or for training as a Sidewalk Counselor, call Noelle at 857-345-0808.

New Covenant House of Hospitality: Saint John’s parishioners staff the kitchens once each month to feed the homeless and less fortunate. For information, please call: 203-324-1553, ext 21.

St. Monica Latin Reading Group: Tuesdays at 12:45 in the Rectory. We are continuing our review of ecclesiastical Latin using Second Latin by Cora and Charles Scanlon and reading excerpts from Ambrosi Epistulae Variae.  An intermediate reading ability in Latin is necessary.

Volunteers: FUTURE 5 is a non-profit organization to help motivated low income high school students in Stamford to improve themselves and their future. We need volunteers to do one-on-one student work, such as college coaches, job prep coaches, and teachers. For more information or to volunteer, please contact Fanny Moran:

Are you a student at UCONN Stamford? in some on campus activities. Please contact Fr. Andy Vill ( We are looking for some help/interest.

R.C.I.A.: No Class Monday, April 3rd

Latin Low Mass: In the Extraordinary Form each Friday at 2pm. Everyone is welcome.

Diocesan Wedding Jubilee Mass: Sunday, April 30th at St. Theresa Parish in Trumbull. Bishop Caggiano will offer Mass for all couples celebrating their 25th, 30th, 35th, 40th, 45th, and 50th wedding anniversaries. A reception will follow in the parish hall. To register by April 24th, please visit: OR, contact Kim Quatela [203-416-1334] OR,

“Walking with Purpose”: A program of prayer and Bible Study for Catholic women, Tuesday mornings beginning at 9:30 am in the Monsignor Nagle Parish Hall. For more information, contact: Rosa Federici at or 203-536-5480.

Natural Family Planning & Fertility Care: Natural Family Planning / Fertility Care – Are you seeking a family planning method that is natural, effective, and morally sound? The Creighton Model System is based upon a couple’s knowledge and understanding of their naturally-occurring phases of fertility and infertility.  Engaged couples preparing for marriage, as well as married couples, and couples who are experiencing infertility issues, can all benefit from using this system. The teachers of the Creighton Model System are trained allied health professionals, and specifically-trained physicians have been educated to incorporate the Creighton Model System into their medical practice. For a FREE introductory session, please contact Angela Marchetti at

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, we can only presume you to be a practicing catholic by tracking your contributions by check or envelope. If you do not attend Mass regularly or practice your Catholic Faith, you cannot be a sponsor.

Homeplace Wisdom: Is a Catholic women’s organization promoting friendship and vocational development with monthly speakers and gatherings, play dates, and a daily email list for sharing ideas, prayer requests, parenting or home-place questions, and reading material. To join:

Catholic Young Adults of Stamford: We are Catholic young adults in our 20s and 30s, We regularly meet for social events and community service projects. Join us for our monthly Sunday dinner following 5pm Mass. Connect with us on Facebook or Meetup, or email us at

Young Adult Mass and Holy Hour: Calling all young adults! Join us for our next monthly Young Adult Mass and Holy Hour, Thursday, April 6th! Holy Hour begins at 6:30pm and Mass begins at 7:30pm. We’ll see you there!

Trinity Catholic High School: Grades 8 thru 12 – First Friday Fest – Every First Friday of the Month -Games, Adoration, Friends, Food – 7PM – 9PM.

Sisters of Life   Do you, or someone you know, have a used automobile SUV or van in good driving condition that can be donated?  The Sisters of Life are in urgent need of reliable vehicles as they travel from all over New York to Stamford and to other locations throughout the Northeast to carry out their work.  For more information, go to, or contact Sr. Mary Karen at (845) 357-3547, or email: Thank you.

Job Seekers: Led by Melanie Szlucha whose company, Red Inc., is a leader in helping find jobs. Jobseeker’s Group in the Monsignor Nagle Hall the 4th Wednesday of every month from 7:30 to 9PM. Topics include Job Interviewing, Resumes, Networking and Job Search Strategies. Next meeting: April 26th. THERE IS NO CHARGE, this is free job coaching. Call Melanie Szlucha at 203-866-1606, or

New Girls Catholic Academy: Pre-K-High School: The religious Sisters of the Company of The Savior hope to open a new girls’ academy in lower Fairfield County within the next few years. The priests of the Basilica parish support this project. If you are interested and would like more information, please contact Sr. Maria:

Trinity Catholic High School: is hosting a Spring College Fair on this Thursday, April 6th, from 6:30pm-8:30PM in the high school gymnasium.

CEMETERY WORKER WANTED: St. John Cemetery in Darien has an FT position available, offering excellent benefits and salary. They are seeking a landscaper with a valid driver’s license to work Mondays-Fridays: 7am—3:30pm and Saturdays, 8:30am-12:30pm, as needed. Fax your resume to: 203-374-7588 or mail to Rob Hannigan at The Catholic Center, 238 Jewett Avenue, Bridgeport, CT 06606.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased

Saturday, April 1, 2017
4:00 +David Roberts req. Diane Costello
Sunday, April 2, 2017
7:30 +Julie Paul Beauzil req. Eveline Lauture
10:00 +June H. Lovell req. Jagodzinski Family
12:00 +Lois Nale Jensen req. Dr. Joe McAleer
5:00 +Hope McAleer
Monday, April 3, 2017
8:00 In honor of parents who choose life
12:10 Doreen Greaney req. Tom Timon
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
8:00 +Gene Tushaj req. Age
12:10 +Helen Cappiello req. Duffy Family
Wednesday, April 5, 2017
8:00 +Margaret Timon req. Tom Timon
12:10 +Elaine Kaplin req. Bill Christiaanse
Thursday, April 6, 2017
8:00 +Elvira Carpanzano req. Pasquale and Ida Carpanzano
12:10 +John and Angelina Pascale req. John Pascale
Friday, April 7, 2017
8:00 +Virginia Carr req. Marie Carr
12:10 +Fr. Anthony Dandry req. John Pascale
Saturday, April 8, 2017
8:00 +Hope and Joseph McAleer req. McAleer family
12:10 +George Santiago req. Maria Santiago and Family

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. For more information, please call Cindy, (203-324-1553, ext 21). Baptisms are offered for parishioners only.
Baptisms are offered in English, French, Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese.

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. Weddings are offered for parishioners only.

Holy Name Society: For men of the parish, meets Fridays in the Rectory, 7-7:50 a.m. for coffee, Eucharistic Adoration & Benediction. All men are welcome. We finish in time for the 8a.m. Mass.

The Legion of Mary: Wednesday Evenings: 7:30 pm ’till 9:00 pm in the Msgr. Nagle Hall.

St. Monica Latin Patristic Reading Group: Tuesdays at 12:45 in the Rectory.

Coffee Hour:  After the 10a.m. Family Mass in the Monsignor Nagle Parish Hall.

St. John’s in THE ADVOCATE:
135 years ago, or so:
April 9, 1892: The Christian Doctrine and Library Society. “Recently organized in connection with the Roman Catholic Church, elected officers as follows: Pres., Rev. W. H. Rogers; Vice-Pres, Patrick Reilly; Sec., Robert Ross; Treas., T. H. Walsh; Librarian Joseph Reilly. The society has a reading room and library finished off in the church building, and three hundred volumes are already on hand.”

125 years ago, or so:
April 4, 1892: Patrick Reilly. “Patrick Reilly died while on a visit at the residence of his sister, Mrs. Edward Flynn, on Green Avenue, Sunday morning, after a short illness of pneumonia. For fifteen years he was principal of St. John’s Parochial School and also organist of St. John’s R. C. Church. About nine years ago he left St. John’s School to accept a similar position in Red Bank, New Jersey.” (EDITOR’S NOTE: Patrick Reilly and Miss Bridget Clarey, later Mrs. James Short, who died in 1914, were the first two teachers when then Pastor Rev. James O’Neil opened the first St. John’s School in 1861. Miss Clarey taught for eleven years in the school.)

100 years ago, or so:
April 5, 1919:  St. John’s Team Wins.  “The baseball team of the 7A class of St. John’s  Parochial School yesterday afternoon defeated the nine of the 7A class of the Center School by the score of 19 to 9. All members of the winning team played well. Scalzi, Senegle and Lipsitz played best for the losers. The lineup for St. John’s: Panapeta, p; Czeiek, c; Gumbar, 1b; Leonard, 2b; Burns, cf; Foley, lf; Gaetano, 3b; Martin, ss; Romano, 2b.”

80 years ago, or so:
April 9, 1937: K of C Furthers Plans for Noting Golden Jubilee. “Further arrangements for the week’s celebration of the golden jubilee anniversary of St. Augustine Council, Knights of Columbus, were made by various committees after a business meeting of the organization in the clubrooms last night. Grand Knight Daniel E. Ryan announced another meeting will be held Thursday night, at which applications for membership will be received. Another group of candidates will be received in the first degree of the order at this meeting, which will be held in St. John’s School hall. The candidates are expected to be on hand at 7:30. About 800 are expected to attend the jubilee dinner at the State Armory on Tuesday, May 4th when Supreme Knight Martin H. Carmody of Grand Rapids, Michigan and other nationally known speakers will address the meeting. A ball will close the week’s anniversary celebration on Friday, May 7th at the State Armory.” (EDITOR’S NOTE: Knights of Columbus Council # 41 was organized at St. John’s in 1887. Today there are nearly 15,000 Councils Worldwide.)