For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link: Bulletin for Sunday April 30, 2017

Pastor’s Corner: May is the first of the beautiful months, when the icy grip of winter finally loosens and life returns. May is the month during which the Church celebrates the most beautiful and most worthy of all women in human history, the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God. From its very beginning, the Church has revered Our Lady because of her personal holiness and intimate relationship with the Divine Persons of the Trinity. The most popular prayer, the Hail Mary, is based on the words addressed to Mary by the Archangel Gabriel at the Annunciation: “Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with Thee,” recalling the wonders God was Our Lady of MercY to work in her life for the salvation of The world, by which as In the Rectory gardeN Our Lady responds, “all generations will call me blessed.” [Luke 1:46-55]

Mary was held in high esteem even during her lifetime, as was any mother in Jewish society, but especially the mother of someone famous or powerful. By the end of the first century, Mary is venerated, NOT worshiped, since alone God receives worship. Mary is venerated as the New Eve, especially described in the writings of Saint Ignatius of Antioch, who had been taught the faith by Saint Peter himself, and died a martyr in 104 AD. Mary, the most perfect representative of our human race, now makes up in her own virtuous life of faith for the sins of the first Eve. God the Father recreates all creation through Christ, the New Adam, with Mary as His human co-operator.

Saint Athanasius, one of the greatest of the Church Fathers, wrote: “O’ Virgin, your glory transcends all created things because of Christ, O Mother of God the Word. We say that cherubs are sublime, but you are more sublime than they: cherubs support the throne of God, but you support God within your arms. Seraphs are close to God, but you are closer than they: Seraphs hide their faces with their wings, unable to look at the perfect glory of God, but you not only contemplate His face, but caress and suckle Him.” [Virgin Mother of God]

The Council of Ephesus in 431 AD formally defined the role of Mary in our salvation: Mary can be called the Mother of God because she gave human form to the Eternal God. She didn’t create God. No mother creates her child, but gave birth in the flesh and human form to the Eternal God. The centuries-old popular devotion to Our Lady became even more popular at the time of the Council.

Mary was held in reverence as the mother of all believers, constantly interceding with Her Son for us while constantly pointing us toward her Son. In Northern Europe, where the winters are harsh, as in New England, May was the first month of new life, with flowers finally blooming after long winters. Mary, the greatest boast of our race, and the most perfect representative of humankind, who shared her humanity with God in Jesus, was honored in May especially with flowers that represent the new creation by God through Christ, such as the lily, the rose, the marigold, and numerous wild-flowers, lady-fern, lady’s mantel, lady’s slipper, maidenhair fern, lady’s thimble, to mention only a few. Our parish gardens reflect the beauty of the Blessed Virgin Mary, to whom they are dedicated.

Another popular prayer, “Hail Holy Queen” captures the reality of Our Lady, in her devotion to Her Son, as the embodiment of all virtue, and as our patron and mother in Heaven: “Hail Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, Our Life, our sweetness, and our hope. To thee do we come, poor banished children of Eve. To thee we do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this valley of tears. Turn, then, most gracious Advocate, thine eyes of mercy towards us, and after this, our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of Thy womb, Jesus. O, Clement, O, Loving, O Sweet Virgin Mary! Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.”

Our Lady is the exemplar of the Christian life; of a human being totally dedicated to Our Lord. She is also our mother, the New Eve, who gave birth to a new creation in Christ, who prays constantly for our salvation. May is naturally the most beautiful of months. Let us imitate that natural beauty by dedicating ourselves to follow Our Lady, making our lives blossom in virtue in her honor and for the love of Her Son.
—Monsignor DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick: Louise Wiles, Frank Wruk, Erin Wiggin, Isaac Lopez, Richard Ridge, Debbie Schemmel, Ron Frasca, Lisa Giugno, Michele Giugno, Helga Pecaric, Kimberly Rice, Jimmy Berube, Maria Travino, Maria Gabriela Mossa, 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: Anne Touhey, Barbara Itri, Daniel Murphy, Bernadette Martelli, John Thompson, Francesco Russo, Lillian Jacobs, Rosalie Liguori, William DeLeo, Sylvia Ardise.

Easter Duty: What makes you a Catholic? The fact that you are “IN Communion” with the Successor of Saint Peter, the pope, and an active member of the Body of Christ, the Catholic Church. We share the same Faith, the sign of that is receiving Holy Communion. The bottom line is that you receive Holy Communion: the Body and Blood of the Resurrected Christ—at least once each year. To receive Holy Communion you must be freed from serious, mortal sin, living a life of grace. The means you should also go to Confession at least once each year. That is done at Easter—the Easter Duty. Catholics are obliged to receive Holy Communion at least once between Easter [April 16] and Pentecost Sunday [June 4]. If you haven’t been to Confession for a while, you should repent of your sins and confess them as a preparation for receiving the Body and Blood of Christ.

JOIN THE CONVERSATION: “The Eaglet,” the new parish blog on our Basilica website, www.stjohnsstamford.com, is up and running, featuring a variety of thought-provoking articles on the Catholic Faith and Church, posted weekly. Feedback is welcome and discussion is encouraged, via a comments form at the end of each article. Please bookmark the page, visit often, and share the link with your family and friends.

MARK YOUR CALENDARS
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 Rectory.

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 of the apparitions of Our Lady at Fatima.

SATURDAY, MAY 6th: 4-7 p.m., 2017 KENTUCKY DERBY: in the Rectory. Our annual fundraiser features a simulcast of the Run for the Roses, fabulous food and drink, and the chance to win some spectacular prizes, like a 70” Samsung UHD smart TV. $10 per wager per horse. Space limited to 100 guests only; tickets: $125. Ladies: Best Hat & Fascinator Contest. Gents: Dapper Dan Contest. All proceeds will fund the work on the church’s 1885 wooden frames supporting the church stained glass windows.

Weekly Sunday collection:
Sunday April 23, 2017 $ 13,475.49
Sunday April 24, 2016 $ 12,851.60

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

May 7th, Sunday Readings: Acts 2:14a, 36-41; 1 Pt 2:20b-25; Jn 10:1-10.

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.

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.

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: $97,562.00 or 88%. 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 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.

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: fmoran@futurefive.org

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

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

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 angelamarchettifcp@gmail.com.

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: lisakotasek@gmail.com

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 catholicyastamford@gmail.com.

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 http://www.sistersoflife.org/donations/donate-items-for-the-community, or contact Sr. Mary Karen at (845) 357-3547, or email: localsuperior.annunciation@sistersoflife.org. 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: May 24th. THERE IS NO CHARGE, this is free job coaching. Call Melanie Szlucha at 203-866-1606, or melanie@redincllc.com.

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.

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: bridgeport@ciasalvador.org.

Ladies Night Out: Join the ladies of St. John’s Parish for a rosary making evening from 7-9pm on Thursday May 18th, 2017 in the Msgr. Nagle Hall. Design and make your own rosary while enjoying community and prayer, with refreshments of wine & cheese and tea & cookies. The cost is $40 per person and can be paid at the door. To register, please email keoglerstudios@gmail.com.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased

Saturday, April 29, 2017
4:00 +Monsignor William A. Nagle req. Joseph Kung
Sunday, April 30, 2017
7:30 Lilly Gabrielle Skidd req. Kelsey and Patrick Skidd
10:00 +Dorothy Jagodzinski req. Jagodzinski Family
12:00 Dina Monti req. Anne Marie and Beth Carpanzano
5:00 +Hope McAleer
Monday, May 1, 2017
8:00 In thanksgiving for all our blessings
12:10 Jimmy Sagdati Birthday req. Marion Morris and Family
Tuesday, May 2, 2017
8:00 +Julie Paul Beauzil req. Eveline Lauture
12:10 +Joseph and Mary Pierni req. Diane DiNapoli & Family
Wednesday, May 3, 2017
8:00 +Margaret Timon req. Tom Timon
12:10 Deceased members of the Churley and Kronk Families
Thursday, May 4, 2017
8:00 +Esther Backman req. Leon Taricani
12:10 +Salvatore Piria req. Rose Migliazza
Friday, May 5, 2017
8:00 Sr. Rosalia Babirye
12:10 Special Intentions Soimil and Yvonne Saint Preuve req. Ferry G.
Saturday, May 6, 2017
8:00 +Juana Mazariegos req. Blanca Reyes
12:10 +Joseph and Effie 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. 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:
125 years ago, or so:
May 3, 1889: Stamford’s Centennial. “This, one of the oldest towns in the State, was not behind others in a proper observance of April 30th. A Mass was said at St. John’s R. C. Church, and taken altogether, the day was properly commemorated in accordance with the Governor’s proclamation. On Atlantic, Main, Broad and other streets, many flags were displayed, and on Monday large banners were flying on the top of Clark & Hoyt’s building, and the flag pole in the park and the Town Hall. The great holiday was variously observed. Some went to church, others to New York, and yet others sent fishing. At 9 A.M., Tuesday, High Mass was said by Father Keena at St. John’s R. C. Church, and a large congregation was present.”

100 years ago, or so:
May 3, 1917: SUPPER FOR THE CAST. “Members of the cast of “Little Jonny Jones” had a social time last evening in St. John’s Parochial School Hall. About 90 members enjoyed a chicken supper and dancing. The decorations were in green and white, the colors of St. John’s Alumni Association, and American flags. John Convery was master of ceremonies. Among the speakers were Rev. J. C. O’Brien, Rev. W. Casey and Rev. Father Callahan. Gifts were presented to Harry Smith, stage director of the play; Miss Elizabeth O’Brien, musical directress, and Miss Annette Kenna, assistant musical directress, in recognition of their work for its success. Rev. Father Casey and James Brennan, president of the association, also received appropriate remembrances. John Convery made the presentations. Each of the recipients made suitable acknowledgment.”

80 years ago, or so:
May 5, 1927: “There will be a rehearsal of the Children of Mary of St. John’s R. C. Church Thursday evening at 7:30 to practice for the reception which will take place Sunday, May 22. White or light colored dresses may be worn this year so there is no excuse for girls not joining. This meeting is for all girls that now belong and all girls that are going to join the Sodality. The Sister in charge is very anxious that a large number of girls turn out at this reception.”

40 years ago, or so:
May 2, 1979: St. John’s Women Join in Communion Breakfast. “The combined St. John rosary Altar Guild and St. Anne Society annual communion Mass at St. John’s Catholic Church will be celebrated by the Rev. William A. Nagle, pastor, Sunday at 9 a.m. The annual communion breakfast will follow at the Marriott Hotel with the Rev. Eugene C. Brissette, S.J., as featured speaker. Father Brissette is a graduate of LaSalle Academy, Providence, R.I. and played football as a Boston College freshman with the future 1941 Sugar Bowl Champions.”