For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link: Bulletin for Sunday May 20, 2018

Parochial Vicar’s Column:

Come Holy Spirit!

This weekend, as we celebrate the Feast of Pentecost when Jesus sent his Holy Spirit upon the apostles, at the 10am Mass I will confer the Sacrament of Confirmation upon eight of our adult Confirmation students. These men and women have prepared over a period of six months to receive the Sacrament which, for one reason or another, they never received during middle school and high school when the majority of us will have received the Sacrament.

One of my best friends growing up decided that he did not want to be confirmed with the rest of our class during our freshman year of High School and his parents did not force him to do so. It wouldn’t be until a cute girl our age asked this friend of mine to teach catechism class with her mother and her during our junior year that he finally learned about his Faith in depth, began preparation for the Sacrament, and was confirmed at the end of our time in High School.

When I was ordained a deacon five years ago, another friend of mine who was a great defender of the Catholic Faith among our peers shared with me that he had never been confirmed either. I was shocked! “You would have thought that I just confessed to committing a crime!” He told me a bit dejected. “I would have found that easier to believe than you not being confirmed!” I told him still incredulous. I couldn’t believe that he whose faith had been so important to him would have delayed completing his Sacraments of Christian Initiation.

Whatever the reason that someone does not receive their Sacraments according to the “typical” schedule, they often find it rewarding to study and prepare to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation as an adult. Over the last two years at the Basilica I have taught the RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults) class and find it to be rewarding each year. Technically the RCIA program is for those who are unbaptized and want to be received into the Catholic Church, but we use it as a sort of “catch-all” class at St. John’s. Each year we have about a dozen students who are either unbaptized and looking to enter the Catholic Church, non-Catholic Christians who are seeking to enter into full Communion with the Church, or those who are already Catholic and need to complete their Sacraments of Initiation (Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist). We even have Catholics who simply want to learn more about their faith and need a “refresher” who join us each year.

When we instruct children, often the examples we give are framed in a way that suggests “when you are older” you might enter into this or that situation. When teaching adults, we are able to teach from a perspective of personal experience and apply what we learn right away to our lives. Because of the format of the class, we can discuss what we are learning and try to apply it to our families, work environments, and social gatherings.

The textbook we use for the class is Catholic Christianity by Dr. Peter Kreeft which follows the same structure as the Catechism of the Catholic Church. They both teach us about 1) what we believe (The Apostles’ Creed), 2) how we are to live (The 10 Commandments), and 3) how we pray and worship (The Lord’s Prayer and the seven Sacraments). When I teach, I am more interested to hear what our students do not understand or actually disagree with since coming to know and understand the truth is our goal. Each year I am impressed by the dedication which our students have and I finish each year proud of the growth I see in their faith.

This year is no different. The men and women who will be confirmed this weekend have spent many hours reading and studying on their own and many hours in class with me discussing the faith that we all share. They are a testimony to the good works God is doing in each of our lives. To them I say congratulations!

If anyone reading this article is interested in learning more about the Catholic Faith, whether you are interested in converting to the Catholic Faith, need to finish your Sacraments of Initiation, or simply want to learn more about your faith, feel free to contact me at to get more details about our RCIA class beginning again in the fall.

   -Fr. Andy Vill

Please pray for the sick:  Monsignor DiGiovanni, Yolanda Bove, Agnes Ostrowski, Marva Mitchell, Michael Cole, Wyanna Burke, Rose Marie Clarke, Janet Caione, Joseph Kung, Loretta Wallace, Michael Scully, Roger Borrelli , Nyal Colies, Dorothy Keyes, Joevil Basulgan DelaCruz, Mary Duffy, Pat Farenga, Kenyon Jimmy Valcour, Jennifer Marciano, Ann Borkowski, Timothy Lyons, Gene Gavin, Richard Ridge, June Roberts, Marie Cassis, Patricia Morgan, Vittorio Faugno, Robert Strada, Dionysia Oliveira, Salvatore Piria, Mary Ellen Callahan, Louise Wiles, Frank Wruk, Isaac Lopez, Ron Frasca, Lisa Giugno, Michele Giugno, Helga Pecaric, Maria Trivino, Maria Gabriela Mossa, Paula Bennett, Mildred Beirne.

Please pray for those who have recently died: John Mellace, Lucy Hawthorn, Ann Borkowski, Art Reynolds, Lena Cocchia, Pasquale [Pat] Santagata, Elma Hefferna, Anne Mennona, Emile Maignan, Regina Derrisaint, Joanne Santarsiero, Carmen Colon Diaz, Kathryn Anne Marciano, Marilyn VanAuken, Joyce Patten, Katherine Kimberly, Mary Louise Wakin, David Kochosky, Jonathan Shearman, Debbie Schemmel,  Susanne and Suzanne DePreta

Banns of Marriage:
I Banns: Bruno Guimaraes Lopes Coelho and Ashley Christina Fumai

II Banns: David Jarrett Kennedy and Elizabeth Carolyn Jane Skidd

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

Police: 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 Stamford’s EMS and Fire Department and our military women and men who protect our nation.

HOLY COMMUNION:     We welcome all visitors and guests to our Basilica.  For those who are not Catholics, know that you are welcome here, but we ask that you not come forward for Holy Communion.  Receiving Holy Communion signifies full membership in the Church founded by Our Lord, called “Catholic” since the end of the first century. Those who are not Catholics are not in full communion with the Church, so please remain in your seats and pray during the communion rite of the Mass. God bless you.

Virtual Tour of the Basilica: Click on the parish website for a virtual tour of the interior, created and donated by Jonathan Powell of Matterport.


June 13, July 13, August 13, September 13, & October 13: 7:00pm: Rosary in honor of Our Lady of Fatima.

Sunday, June 3rd, Corpus Christi: Following the 12 noon Mass, A Procession of the Most Blessed Sacrament through the streets of Stamford and a cookout to follow.  [Weather permitting-if raining, the procession will be inside the Basilica and no cookout]. Everyone is welcome.

Saturday, June 23 : The Basilica of St. John’s is hosting an all day conference in honor of the 50th anniversary of Humanae vitae on June 23rd. Speakers include Mary Eberstadt, Mary FioRito, and George Weigel and a panel of medical experts. The 4PM Vigil Mass will be offered by Bishop Caggiano. Register at

Weekly Sunday collection: 

Sunday         May 13, 2018                           $  14,083.82
Sunday         May 14, 2017                           $  15,288.31

  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 27th Sunday Readings:  Dt 4:32-34, 39-40 ; Rom 8:14-17; Mt 28:16-20 (165)

Baptism/Confirmation Sponsorship Certificate:  When asked to be a sponsor, a certificate is needed from your home parish. If the  priest does not know you personally, or by sight, the only other way of knowing you as a practicing Catholic is by confirming your mass attendance by your use of weekly envelopes.

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.  They are  in need of WINTER maternity clothes (all sizes). Call 203-348-4355 or if you can help.

Project Rachel- Are you or someone you know hurting from a past abortion experience? There is help and hope. Project Rachel is offering an Entering Canaan Day of Prayer and Healing on Saturday, July 14, 2018 for women who are suffering from a past abortion. Please contact 203-895-3554 or for more information and confidential registration.

End Legalized Abortion:  Abortions take place daily at Stamford’s Planned Parenthood, 35 Sixth Street.  Help us stop this by joining parishioners in front of the facility on Wednesday or Friday mornings, 8am-10:30am, or even just for 30 minutes. We pray and silently bear witness to the sanctity of human life. Our presence has helped convince expectant mothers to spare their children. Call Noelle at 857-345-0808 for specialized training as a Sidewalk Counselor.

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. We also need tutors.  We currently have a  new student who needs a  tutor  in Japanese. For more  information or to volunteer and/or tutor, please contact Fanny Moran:

First Friday Adoration– Join St. Catherine of Sienna in Riverside for First Friday Holy Hour after the 5:15 mass.  Holy Hour and Benediction will take place every first Friday of the month. All are welcome!

EWTN Radio is coming to our diocese! Visit  to learn more and to support this apostolate dedicated to bringing faithful, entertaining Catholic programming to our community.

Men’s Choir: Men who can even just hum a tune are welcome: contact David Indyk in person, or leave your contact information at the parish office, 203-324-1553, ext 21.

Redemptoris Mater  Diocesan Missionary Seminary Open House– Come and meet the seminarians on Saturday, June 30, 2018  and Sunday, July 1, 2018 from 10:00AM– 6:00PM at 21 Schuyler Avenue, Stamford, CT 06902. Enjoy a moment of communion with songs and food! Tours through the seminary will begin every 20 Minutes and all are invited to enjoy a delicious barbecue afterwards!  Please call to reserve your spot at 203-588-1785 or

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

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:

JOIN THE CONVERSATIONThe Eaglet, the parish blog on our Basilica website,

Not Married in the Catholic Church? Please call the parish 203) 324-1553 or Fr. Vill at (ext. 130) to make an appointment, to discuss the Church’s teaching on marriage and the possibility of getting married in the Church. This also applies to those who want to learn more about seeking an annulment.

SilverSource: SilverSource is available to St. John’s parishioners both as a place to volunteer or an important resource to help parishioners as we age. SilverSource is looking for volunteers to help older adults live as independently as possible by reaching out to say “hello”, reading and visiting a senior, or running to the market. St. John’s parishioners who are seniors and require some help can receive financial assistance for housing stability, for eye glasses and hearing aids, or for transportation to and from doctor’s appointments. Call Michael Feighan: 203-324-6584, or website:

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

Catholic Adventures: Join Catholic young adults in their 20s and 30s for adventurous activities throughout the year. Connect with us on Facebook (Catholic Adventures) or email us at for more information.

Job Seekers: Next meeting: Wednesday, May 23rd. Led by Melanie Szlucha whose company, Red Inc., is a leader in helping find jobs. Meetings are held in Monsignor Nagle Hall on the 4th Wednesday of every month from 7:30 to 9PM. Topics include Job Interviewing, Resumes, Networking and Job Search Strategies.  THERE IS NO CHARGE, this is free job coaching. Call Melanie Szlucha at 203-866-1606, or

FORMED: Donated by a parishioner, this is a revolutionary online platform provides access to the best Catholic audio talks, movies, e-books, and video-based studies from trusted providers like the Augustine Institute, Ignatius Press, Catholic Answers, Sophia Institute Press, and St. Paul Center– right at your fingertips, without cost. Learn more at Access Code WWT2NF.                                                                                         

P2P On WheelsPerson-to-Person recently launched a Mobile Food Pantry that is serving Stamford’s food insecure where they live and we need volunteers to help with registration and client shopping on the truck and sorting food donations in the warehouse. Shifts are 2 hours. If you are interested in signing up for a regular shift please visit to find the job that’s right for you and sign up with Rick Nixon. Thank you!

Mass Intentions

 +  Denotes Deceased

Saturday, May 19, 2018
4:00   +George Terenzio req. Family
Sunday, May 20, 2018
7:30   +Gloria Jean and Karl Berger, Jr. req. Family
10:00 +Joseph and Effie Ramos req. Lilian and Alvina Ramos
12:00 +Salvatore Preziosi 2nd Anniversary req. Jimmy and Michelle Sagdati
5:00   +Adelaide White
Monday, May 21, 2018
8:00     Souls in Purgatory
12:10   Salvatore Piria req. Domenico Piria
Tuesday, May 22, 2018
8:00     Souls in Purgatory req. John and Jennifer Marciano
12:10   Healing of Msgr. DiGiovanni
Wednesday, May 23, 2018
8:00   +Patrick Kane and Family req. Estate of Catherine Kane & Family
12:10   Mildred Beirne God’s Blessing req. Joan Beirne
Thursday, May 24, 2018
8:00     Special Intention
12:10   World Day of Prayer for China
Friday, May 25, 2018
8:00   +Margaret Mary Cycon req. Thomas Cycon
12:10 +John Maloney req. Mary Maloney
Saturday, May 26, 2018
8:00   +Mr. and Mrs. Naissance Jean Guillaume req. by family
12:10 +Marge Lemanski req. Lisa Kober

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 Keri, (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, Keri, 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: The St Monica Latin Reading Group meets on Tuesdays.  Please call St John’s Rectory, 203 324 1553, ext. 21, for more information.

St. John’s in THE ADVOCATE:

100 years ago, or so:
May 26, 1919: RECEIVED INTO SODALITY. “Thirty-two girls were received in the Sodality of the Children of Mary, last night, in St. John’s Catholic Church. The ceremony was pretty and impressive. The candidates and the members of the Sodality all were dressed in white and each wore a white veil. The ceremony was marked by a procession, singing of hymns, reception of members, and crowning of the Virgin with a wreath. Rev. Paul F. Keating of St. Mary’s Church preached a sermon, in which he urged the members of the Sodality to make their lives worthy of a Mother so high and to ask for her intercession. In the processional march, the banner-bearer, Miss Irene Hogan, vice-president of the Sodality, walked first. The tassel-bearers, Miss Eva Bartley and Miss Alice Fitzgerald, followed. The crown-bearer, Miss Margaret Garvey, president of the Sodality, was attended by four little girls. Then came Miss Josephine Iffand, secretary, Miss Leah Berjeron and Miss Catherine Finnegan, attended by fifteen little misses representing the fifteen mysteries of the Rosary, each carry carnations– white, red and pink. They walked ahead of the candidates who were to be received into the Sodality. As the members of the Sodality approached the altar to be received in the society by Rev. Henry Callahan, the Sodality sang “Ave Maria Stella.” Miss Anne Mullen read the Act of Consecration. The sermon was delivered at this point. Benediction followed. After benediction, a hymn was rendered by all of the members of the Sodality—”Farewell to May.”.”

80 years ago, or so:
May 25, 1936:  May Crowning Procession of Children of Mary Sodality at St. John’s R. C. Church.  “The May crowning procession of the Children of Mary Sodality was held in St. John’s R. C. Church, yesterday afternoon. Following the procession, the Rev. Charles Hagearty, chaplain, delivered a sermon. Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament was conducted by the Rev. Charles Corcoran, followed by singing by the boys’ choir. Dressed in white and wearing veils, members of the Sodality proceeded around the church, singing the Children of Mary song. The president, Miss Marion McRedmond, adorned the statue of the Blessed Virgin with a veil and jeweled crown. After leaving offerings of flowers at the altar of the Blessed Virgin, the members returned to their seats. The procession was led by choir boys in red cassocks and white  surplices. Miss Kathryn Leonard, vice president, carried the processional cross. Four aides were the Misses Jean O’Connor, Gladys Lynch, Doris Lynch and Jean Merritt. These were followed by the officers, including Miss Marion Hogan, treasurer; accompanied by Marion Blake and Dolores Koba; Miss Anna Fitzgibbon, corresponding secretary, accompanied by John O’Connor and Colleen Gorman; Miss Mary Duplex, recording secretary, accompanied by Kathleen Ingersoll and Nancy Dicamilla.”