Bulletin for Sunday April 11, 2010

For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday April 11, 2010

Pastor ’s Corner. . .God’s work to save mankind from death and to reconcile all creation to Himself began at the moment when Mary pledged her life to the announcement of God’s plan by the Archangel Gabriel. The Eternal God became fully man, except free from sin, in order to pay the price of all human sin by offering that human body, soul and life on the Cross, and rise in that flesh on the third day to overcome death for us all. This is the primary reason why God became man. As the means to extend the effects of Christ’s Cross and Resurrection from the dead throughout the world and through every century, He sent the Holy Spirit to begin His one Church. The following excerpts from two homilies by Pope Saint Leo the Great express this great reality of God’s hard work to save us to live with Him forever in the flesh:

“Majesty humbled itself, power became weak, and eternity mortal. To pay the debt inherent in our [human] estate, the unchangeable nature of God was united to our changeable human nature so that, as our healing required, the one Mediator between God and men, the man Jesus Christ, might be both subject to death because he was a man and yet free of death because he was God.
“The true and eternal God was thus born a full and complete man, wholly divine and wholly human. By ‘human’ we mean what the Creator made in the beginning with Adam, and what He made His own in order to redeem it. Whatever the deceiver [Satan] introduced into us and deceived man accepted, had no place in the Savior. He shared our weaknesses but not our sins.
“He took the status of a servant, therefore, but of a sinless one, exalting the humanity without lessening the divinity. For this self-emptying in which the invisible God became visible, and the Creator and Lord of all things willed to become a mortal creature, was the stooping of pity, not the failing of power. Thus He who as God created man became a man Himself in the form of a servant [Jesus].
“The Son of God enters our lowly world, descending from His heavenly throne but not putting off the glory that He has from the Father. He is reborn in a new way—new, because though invisible of Himself as God, He became visible as man; though incomprehensible, He willed to be comprehended; existing before all time, He began to exist in time; the Lord of the universe hid His majesty and took the estate of a servant; the impassible God did not disdain to become a suffering man, and though immortal, to subject Himself to the Law of death” [Letter 28, To Flavian].

“The Son of God, has taken human nature so closely to Himself that one and the same Christ consists not only of that Man himself who is the First-born of every creature, but of all His saints as well. As our head cannot be separated from the members of the body without doing damage to the body, neither can the members [of the Church] be separated from its Head [Christ].
“Although it is said of eternal life and not of our earthly estate that God is all in all, yet He dwells even now in His temple, the Church, as He promised: ‘I am with you all days, even to the end of the world.’ All that God’s Son did and taught, therefore, to reconcile the world to the Father is not simply a fact of past history, but a present and operative reality now. Himself born of the Virgin by the Spirit’s power, He now makes His spotless church fruitful through the same Spirit, and she bears countless children to God in the birth of Baptism. Of these children it is written: ‘They are born, not of flesh and blood or of human desire, but of God,’ He it is who, excluding none, forms all the nations of the earth into one holy flock and daily fulfills His promise to gather all His sheep. Though He said to blessed Peter, above all others, ‘Feed my sheep,’ the Lord Himself is everyone’s Shepherd. He so strengthens them with His love that, as He did not hesitate to die for them, they do not hesitate to die for Him.
“For, if we share the Body and Blood of Christ [in the Eucharist], we are assimilated to what we eat and drink [to Christ, Himself]. In all circumstances we will show forth in body and soul the image of Him in whom and with whom we died and were buried and rose to new life [in Baptism]” [Sermon 12, On the Passion].

Such is God’s love for us that He would go to such lengths to give us a share in His Divine Life: now through the Sacraments of His Church, leading to eternity in the flesh. —Mons. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick. . . George Szele, Robert Lebeau, Connie Ward, Cheryl Carucci, Jerry Pellegrino, Joan Bachman, Irene Zelinsky, Nicholas Czekanski, Wilfred Baretto, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Mary Moriarty, Carmella Micik, Julie Grant, Lois Porter, Joseph Lasko, Billy Therriault, Wendy Woodin, Janet Rodgers, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans.

Please pray for those who have recently died. . . Margaret L. Rekos, Mary Catherine Sheehan, Paul K.Jankowicz, James Thomas, Marjorie L. O’Kane, Lawrence Schmidt Jr., Catherine B. Pullen, Wilhelmina-Belia Falek-Roerhost, Keith Segovia, Frank L. Infante, Dolores A. Deluca Freccia, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Roshah E. DeJean, Paul Reda, Katherine Dziezyc, John Castellano, Eugene Lops, Msgr. Lawrence McMahon, Rev. Al Russo, George “Bud” Ayers, William Wolf, Alfred Gautrau, David Lloyd, Evelyn Mahan, Joseph Logsdail, Peggy Pikul, Monsignor John Horgan Kung, Theodore Pikul, Rosemary Hynes Finn, George T. Murphy, William Morris, Jesus Cala, Liliane Joelle Tsemo, Elizabeth A. Coughlin, Hector Jance, Paul Rittman.

Mass On Line. . .Visit the parish website: www.stjohnsstamford.com, click the photo of the church up top, and you’ll see live all that’s going on in church, daily. (Note: Audio requires “ActiveX” which is specifically designed to work with Windows systems [i.e. Internet Explorer]. “ActiveX” by Microsoft is not supported on other operating systems such as Apple “Mac OS” or “GNU/Linux.”) 

Divine Mercy Devotions. . . April 11th: Will not take place this year because of the Stamford Symphony/Basilica Choir benefit presentation of Mozart’s Requiem.

GRAND CONCERT to BENEFIT HAITI . . .Sunday, April 11, the Stamford Symphony and the Choir of the Basilica of St. John will present the famous Requiem by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart at 7:30 PM. A benefit concert for the victims of the earthquake in Haiti, 100% of the proceeds will go to Haitian relief efforts. The concert will be conducted by Maestro Eckart Preu, the chorus prepared by Scott Turkington. While no entrance fee will be required, a suggested donation of $25.00 will go far toward raising needed funds to aid those now suffering in Haiti. Donors wishing to contribute $50.00 or more will be listed in the Donors’ Circle section of the printed program and will have reserved seating. Please see the St. John’s website for more information: stjohnsstamford.com. THIS CONCERT WILL NOT BE BROADCAST ON THE PARISH CAMERAS.

A NIGHT AT THE OPERA. . . Please join us Saturday May 1st at 7:00 pm in the church for a Live Performance featuring Stars of the Metropolitan Opera. Proceeds will benefit the ongoing restoration of our historic church. For ticket and sponsorship information please call 203-324-1553, ext.21 or register on the parish website www.stjohnsstamford.com. THIS CONCERT WILL NOT BE BROADCAST ON THE PARISH CAMERAS.

Saint Gabriel Church. . . Will host a concert of sacred music on Friday, April 30th at 7:30 pm, with Bishop Lori. All are invited and admission is free. An offering can be made at the door. Please mark your calendar for this special event marking the end of the Year of the Priest.

Easter Sunday 2010 $ 21,288.20
Easter Sunday 2009 $ 17,443.71

“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

April 18th Sunday Readings: Acts 5:27-32, 40b-41; Rev 5:11-14; Jn 21:1-19 or 21:1-14.

Hymns for this Sunday . . . (1) 79 (2) 83.

Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass
Mass Ordinary: Mass for Four Voices – William Byrd, 1540-1623
All are encouraged to sing the Creed at the Noon Mass, which may be found in the hymnal at No. 289. The Creed is sung alternating with the choir at each double bar line.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Quasi modo (As newborn babes, alleluia, long for pure spiritual milk, alleluia, alleluia. Rejoice in honour of God our helper; shout for joy to the God of Jacob. [I Peter 2:2]); Sequence Victimæ paschali laudes (To the Paschal Victim, Christians, offer a sacrifice of praise. The Lamb has ransomed his sheep; the innocent Christ has reconciled sinners with the Father. Death and life confronted each other in a prodigious battle; the Prince of life who died, now lives and reigns. “Tell us, Mary, what did you see upon the way?” “I saw sepulchre of the living Christ; I saw the glory of the Risen One. I saw the angels, his witnesses, the shroud and the garments. Christ, my Hope, is risen. He will go before his own into Galilee.” We know that Christ is truly risen from the dead; O Victorious King, have mercy upon us.); Alleluia Post dies octo (Eight days later, while all the doors were shut, Jesus came out and stood in the midst of his disciples and said: “Peace be with you.” [John 20:26]); Offertory Angelus Domini (The angel of the Lord came down from heaven and said to the women: “The One whom you seek has risen, as he said he would”, alleluia. [Matthew 28:2,5,6]); Communion Mitte manum (Stretch forth your hand, and feel the place where the nails were, alleluia; and be not doubtful but believing, alleluia, alleluia. [I Corinthians 5:7,8]).
Offertory Motet: Haec Dies – Marc’Antonio Ingegneri, 1547-1592 (This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. [Ps. 118:24,1]).
Communion Motets: Surrexit Christus Dominus – M. Praetorius (Christ the Lord is risen, the world’s sole Redeemer; this we know, taught by the angels who announced it to the women. Alleluia. He is risen in triumph, the power of death being broken; examine the cave of the tomb, you will see only thy shroud. Alleluia. For us He reigns forever, Judge eternal of our life, giver of light and righteousness, salvation and purity. Alleluia.). This joyful Eastertide – David’s Psalmen, 1685, arr. Charles Wood, 1866-1926 (The text may be found in the hymnal at No. 84.).

Marriage Anniversaries. . . Bishop Lori will celebrate a Mass for couples observing their 15th—50th—plus wedding anniversaries this year on April 25th at 3:00 PM at St. Theresa Church, Trumbull. Please call St. John’s rectory [203-324-1553, ext 21] to register.

Annual Bishop’s Appeal. . . Our Parish goal is $85,000. Please be generous to Bishop Lori.

20’s and 30’s . . . Meets next Wednesday April 14th, in the Rectory.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased

Saturday, April 10
4:00 + John E. Hogan req. Terenzio Family, Donald F. Reid req. Friends of the Reed Family
Sunday, April 11
7:30 + Michael A. Rubino, Sr. req. Lori & James Rubino
10:00 Forgotten Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.
12:00 Our Lady of Loretto Altar Guild req. Msgr. DiGiovanni
7:00 No 6:00 PM Mass. Mozart Requiem Concert for Haiti at 7 P.M
Monday, April 12
8:00 God’s Blessings for Diane Strain req. Marion Morris
12:10 +Rose & Vito Longo req. Daughter-Millie
Tuesday, April 13
8:00 Thanksgiving to the Holy Family
12:10 Birgitta O’Brien-Costantino Birthday
Wednesday, April 14
8:00 +Tin Nguyen req. Thang Nguyen
12:10 +Mr. Arthur & Anna Jean-Guillaume req. Children & Grand Children
Thursday, April 15
8:00 +William F. McNamara req. Daughters
12:10 +Eugene Lope req. Ferry G.
Friday, April 16
8:00 +Paul Rittman req. Mary Jean DalMolin
12:10 +Lynn Hayes req. Tom & Olga Kolenberg
Saturday, April 17
8:00 +Bonfelio & Yolanda Preli req. Phil DeFelice & Family
12:10 + Karl Gandt req. St. Monica’s Study Group

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 8 am Mass.

The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society . . .meets Saturdays in the Rectory, at 9:30 a.m. for coffee, conversation, Rosary, and a spiritual conference. All ladies of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

Moms & Tots . . . Moms and their kids meets each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30 a.m..

Religious Education. . . Sundays: 8:30 a.m. Sunday Mass attendance is a duty for all students and Catholic parents.

Convert Class [RCIA]. . .Tuesday Evenings 7:30 pm—8:30 pm in the rectory. Call Fr. Walsh, ext. 14.

Pray to end legalized abortion . . . Weds, 7-10:30a.m., Stamford’s Planned Parenthood, 1039 East Main St.

St. Dominic Savio Society. . . . For the spiritual formation of young men from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert 203-324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, please contact Suzanna Bosthwick, 203-554-2004.

The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory.

The Legion of Mary. . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory. All are welcome.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory

Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory.

Bible Study. . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory. Join us.

Coffee Hour. . . After the 10:00 a.m. Mass. All are welcome.

St. John’s in the Advocate:
115 years ago, or so:
April 13, 1897: “May 7 next will be the tenth anniversary of the organization of St. Augustine council, K. of C. The celebration, however, will probably be held on a later date, and a live committee is now busy making elaborate arrangements for the event.”

100 years ago, or so:
April 18, 1904: PASTOR AT WHITE HOUSE. “Rev. James C. O’Brien, pastor of St. John’s R.C. Church, together with a few other priests from this State, had an audience with President Roosevelt at the White House, last week. Father O’Brien made the trip for the purpose of attending the ceremonies marking the endowment of the Catholic University with a charter in secular history by the Knights of Columbus. The audience with the President was arranged by Congressman at Large Lilley of Waterbury and Congressman Hill of Norwalk. Father O’Brien spent several minutes with Mr. Roosevelt, and was much impressed with the striking personality of the man. “The President received our party most cordially,” said Father O’Brien this morning “and we were of course delighted with our reception. He impresses the visitor as being a vigorous, strong and energetic man, with great enthusiasm. He has a most interesting personality, and is a very pleasant conversationalist.” Father O’Brien also speaks highly of the way the Knights of Columbus were received generally in Washington. He says that Congressmen Lilley, Hill and Brandegee were especially attentive to the Connecticut delegation. Rev. Father Clyne, who was in Virginia for a couple of weeks, returned with Father O’Brien.”

35 years ago, or so:
April 16, 1964: Religious Authors Educational Work; Parents In Stamford. “A new literary work in the field of Catholic education has been completed by Mother Marie Aimee Carey, O.S.U., a Stamford resident who entered the Ursuline Novitiate at New Rochelle, N.Y. nearly 15 years ago. The daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Edward V. Carey, of 20 Broadwood Dr., Mother Marie Aimee is author of “A Bibliography for Christian Formation In the Family,” published by the Paulist Press of Glen Rock, N.J. Distribution of the work is being aided by several Stamford Catholic Churches. It was prepared as a treatise by the religious in pursuit of her educational advancement. Now in Rome for a year of religious and cultural studies, Mother Marie Aimee is a graduate of St. John’s Parochial School, Sacred Heart Academy, College of New Rochelle, and received her master’s degree from Catholic University, Washington, D.C.”

Divine Mercy Sunday
The Elevation
– Fr. Terry Walsh

What thoughts run through your heart and mind at that extraordinary moment of grace when the Consecrated Host is raised to the Father in sacrifice? What greater example of mercy could there possibly be? Jesus offers His very Body and Blood, laying down His very life for sinful humanity. It is truly the supreme act of love and mercy.

What inspirations flow into the depths of your soul at that extraordinary moment? One faithful communicant once shared with me his response at that extraordinary moment of the Holy Mass: “My Lord and My God” echoing the words of the Apostle Thomas who probed the open wound in the side of Christ, piercing the veil, as it were, moving from doubt to true knowledge of our Lord’s Perfect Sacrifice. Thomas fell to his knees in thankful adoration – just as we utter those faithful words upon our knees and contemplate His love. In those few brief moments, we gaze upon mercy and love himself and see with the eyes of faith the vision Isaiah had been granted when he came to serve God: extraordinary Light emanating from the very Heart of God, exploding out to all the Universe, stamping out darkness, crushing all impurity, restoring Light, Happiness, and Peace.

In those holy moments when I look up at our Lord resting in my hands I pray the prayer of St. Faustina: “O Blood and Water which gushed forth from the Heart of Jesus as a font of Mercy for us, I Trust in You.” He has revealed Himself as our Merciful Redeemer. He has offered Himself in sacrifice for our salvation; we are offered the gift of life in the Eucharist. Our Patron, St. John, uses the images of Light and Water in his Gospel, as well as his letters, to describe the flow of grace, that is, the flow of mercy and love from the Temple, the Body of the Risen Christ. The vision of this glorious flow of grace described by John and seen by St. Faustina draws our eyes back to the tiny host wherein our Lord resides – for us. Thoughts drift back to that still moment when the Centurion thrust the lance into the dead Body of Christ Crucified, opening up the gates of life, never to be closed again. Let us not forget that that same Sword pierced the Immaculate Heart of His Most Pure Virgin Mother through whom the gift of eternal life came to us. Like St. Thomas, the Centurion recognized in an instant that he was in the Presence of God. That Roman soldier, St. Longenius, dropped to his knees and believed and was washed clean in His Blood.

What thoughts run through your heart and mind at that extraordinary moment of grace when you likewise find yourself at the foot of the Cross – at every Holy Mass and the consecrated host is raised to the Father in the most extraordinary act of love and mercy – for you? After all, we, too, have pierced Him. Yet, He forgives. He turns His Merciful gaze toward each one of us from the tiny host and He calls each one of us by name: “Come to Me…I will give you ‘Living Water’… ‘I will fill you with Divine Light’… ‘I will feed your thirsty soul with the Bread of Angels and streams of Living Water will forever well up from within you!’ How can our reaction be anything other than “My Lord and My God!”

Bulletin for Easter Sunday April 4, 2010

For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Easter Sunday April 4, 2010

Pastor ’s Corner. . .This is a third century homily for Holy Saturday, a meditation on Christ’s descent into Hell: God had become man to redeem all aspects of human existence, even the eternal effects of mankind’s abandonment of God through sin—Hell, in which were all the dead since Adam. Christ, “who knew no sin, became sin”, as St. Paul wrote, took on the guilt of all human sin, and experienced even that final abandonment—allowing Himself to become repugnant to the Father, as the means to pay for mankind’s abandonment of God. His descent into Hell extended the power of the Cross to the dead—on Satan’s home court, granting them a share in His triumph over death by His bodily Resurrection:
“What is happening? Today there is a great silence over the earth, a great silence and stillness, a silence because the King sleeps; the earth was in terror and had fallen still, for God slept in the flesh and raised up those who were sleeping in death from the ages. God is dead in the flesh, and the underworld has trembled. Truly, He goes to seek our first parent like a lost sheep. He wills to visit those who sit in the dark shadows of death. He goes to free the prisoner Adam and his wife Eve from their grievous captivity, He who is God, and Adam’s son.”
“The Lord goes in to them holding his victorious weapon, the Cross. When Adam, the first created man, sees Him, he strikes his breast in terror and calls out to all: ‘My Lord be with you all.’ And Christ in reply says to Adam: ‘And with your spirit.’ And grasping Adam’s hand raises him up, saying: “Awake, sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give you light.”
“I am your God, who for your sake became your son, who for you and your descendants now speak and command with authority those in prison [Hades, cf I Pet 3:19]: Come forth, and to those in darkness: have light, and to those who sleep: Rise.”
“I command you: Awake, sleeper! I did not create you to lie bound in Hell. Arise from the dead, for I am life to those who have died. Rise up, work of my hands, my likeness, made in my image. Rise, let us go hence; for you in me and I in you, together we are one undivided person.”
“For your sake I your God became your son; for you, I the Master took on your form, that of slave; for you, I who am above the heavens came on earth and under the earth; for you, man, I became as a man without help, free among the dead; for you, who left a garden [Eden], I was handed over from the garden [of Olives] and crucified in a garden [Golgotha].”
“See the spittle on my face—it was for you, that you might have the breath of life again. See my cheeks reddened by the blows—it was for you, that you might be remade in my image. See my torn back—it was for you, that I might take the load of sin from your shoulders. See the nail-marks in my hands—it was for you, because you once put your hand to the fruit of the forbidden tree.”
“I slept on the cross and a sword pierced my side, for you, who slept in paradise and brought forth Eve from your side. My side healed the pain of your side; my sleep will release you from your sleep of death in Hades; my sword has checked the sword [of the angel guarding Eden] which was turned against you.”
“Arise, let us go hence. Satan, the enemy, brought you out of the land of paradise; I will reinstate you, no longer in paradise, but I have a heavenly throne prepared for you. I denied you the tree of life, which was only a symbol, but now I myself am united to you, I who am life itself. I posted the cherubim to guard you as they would slaves; now, the cherubim shall bow down before you” [Patrologia Greca, 43: 439]. —Mons. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick. . . Robert Lebeau, Connie Ward, Cheryl Carucci, Jerry Pellegrino, Joan Bachman, Irene Zelinsky, Nicholas Czekanski, Wilfred Baretto, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Mary Moriarty, Carmella Micik, Julie Grant, Lois Porter, Joseph Lasko, Billy Therriault, Wendy Woodin, Janet Rodgers, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans, Margaret Romaine.

Please pray for those who have recently died. . . Paul Jankowicz, James Thomas, Marjorie L. O’Kane, Lawrence Schmidt Jr., Catherine B. Pullen, Wilhelmina-Belia Falek-Roerhost, Keith Segovia, Frank L. Infante, Dolores A. Deluca Freccia, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Roshah E. DeJean, Paul Reda, Katherine Dziezyc, John Castellano, Eugene Lops, Msgr. Lawrence McMahon, Rev. Al Russo, George “Bud” Ayers, William Wolf, Alfred Gautrau, David Lloyd, Evelyn Mahan, Joseph Logsdail, Peggy Pikul, Monsignor John Horgan Kung, Theodore Pikul, Rosemary Hynes Finn, George T. Murphy, William Morris, Jesus Cala, Liliane Joelle Tsemo, Elizabeth A. Coughlin, Hector Jance, Paul Rittman.

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

Mass On Line. . .Visit the parish website: www.stjohnsstamford.com, click the photo of the church up top, and you’ll see live all that’s going on in church, daily. (Note: Audio requires “ActiveX” which is specifically designed to work with Windows systems [i.e. Internet Explorer]. “ActiveX” by Microsoft is not supported on other operating systems such as Apple “Mac OS” or “GNU/Linux.”) 

The Eagle. . .A new parish publication, edited by our own Dr. Joseph McAleer, will provide a variety of interesting articles each month on theology, the spiritual life, Catholic cultural life and even reviews of local restaurants, bakeries and other neighborhood emporia.

Divine Mercy Devotions. . . April 11th: Will not take place this year because of the Stamford Symphony/Basilica Choir benefit presentation of Mozart’s Requiem.

GRAND CONCERT to BENEFIT HAITI . . . Next Sunday, April 11, the Stamford Symphony and the Choir of the Basilica of St. John will present the famous Requiem by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart at 7:30 PM. A benefit concert for the victims of the earthquake in Haiti, 100% of the proceeds will go to Haitian relief efforts. The concert will be conducted by Maestro Eckart Preu, the chorus prepared by Scott Turkington. While no entrance fee will be required, a suggested donation of $25.00 will go far toward raising needed funds to aid those now suffering in Haiti. Donors wishing to contribute $50.00 or more will be listed in the Donors’ Circle section of the printed program and will have reserved seating. Please see the St. John’s website for more information: stjohnsstamford.com. THIS CONCERT WILL NOT BE BROADCAST ON THE PARISH CAMERAS.

A NIGHT AT THE OPERA. . . Please join us Saturday May 1st at 7:00 pm in the church for a Live Performance featuring Stars of the Metropolitan Opera. Proceeds will benefit the ongoing restoration of our historic church. For ticket and sponsorship information please call 203-324-1553, ext.21 or register on the parish website www.stjohnsstamford.com.
THIS CONCERT WILL NOT BE BROADCAST ON THE PARISH CAMERAS.

Coffee Hour. . .There will be No Coffee Hour Easter Sunday, April 4th. Coffee hour will resume next Sunday, April 11th, after the 10:00 a.m. Mass. All are welcome.

Sunday March 28, 2010 $ 12,374.45
Sunday March 29, 2009 $ 11,644.84

“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

April 11th Sunday Readings: Acts 5:12-16; Rev 1:9-11a, 12-13, 17-19; Jn 20:19-31.

Hymns for this Sunday . . . (1) 79 (2) 83.

Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass
Mass Ordinary: Missa brevis in C, K. 229 – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, 1756-1791.
All are encouraged to sing the Creed at the Noon Mass, which may be found in the hymnal at No. 289. The Creed is sung alternating with the choir at each double bar line.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Resurrexi (I am risen, and I am always with you, alleluia; you have placed your hand upon me, alleluia; your wisdom has been shown to be most wonderful, alleluia, alleluia. O Lord, you have searched me and known me; you know when I sit down and when I rise up. [Ps. 139:18,5,6,1,2]); Alleluia Pascha nostrum (Christ, our Paschal Lamb, has been sacrificed. [I Corinthians 5:7]); Sequence Victimæ paschali laudes (The text may be found in the hymnal at No. 315); Offertory Terra tremuit (The earth trembled and was still, when God arose in judgment, alleluia. [Ps.75]); Communion Pascha nostrum (Christ, our Paschal Lamb, has been sacrificed, alleluia; therefore, let us keep the feast by sharing the unleavened bread of uprightness and truth, alleluia, alleluia. [I Corinthians 5:7,8]).
Offertory Motet: Ye Choirs of New Jerusalem – Sir Charles Villiers Stanford, 1852-1924 (The text may be found in the hymnal at No. 85).
Communion Motets: Laudate Dominum – W. A. Mozart (O praise the Lord, all ye heathen. Praise him all ye nations. For his merciful kindness is ever more and more towards us, and the truth of the Lord endureth for ever. Praise the Lord. [Psalm 117]); Ave verum – Mozart (The tx may be found in the hymnal at No. 296); Most glorious Lord of life – Sir William Harris, 1883-1973 (Most glorious Lord of life, that on this day Didst make Thy triumph over death and sin, And having harrowed hell, didst bring away Captivity thence captive, us to win. This joyous day, dear Lord, with joy begin, And grant that we for whom Thou didest die, Being with Thy dear blood clean washed from sin, May live for ever in felicity : And that Thy love we weighing worthily, May likewise love Thee for the same again; And for Thy sake, that all like dear didst buy, With love may one another entertain. So let us love, dear Love, like as we ought; Love is the lesson which the Lord us taught. [Edmund Spencer 1522-99]).

Marriage Anniversaries. . . Bishop Lori will celebrate a Mass for couples observing their 15th—50th—plus wedding anniversaries this year on April 25th at 3:00 PM at St. Theresa Church, Trumbull. Please call St. John’s rectory [203-324-1553, ext 21] to register.

Annual Bishop’s Appeal. . .Our Parish goal is $85,000. Please be generous to Bishop Lori.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased

HOLY SATURDAY, April 3
8:00PM Easter Vigil: People of the Parish
Easter Sunday, April 4
7:30 People of the Parish
10:00 Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
12:00 Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.
6:00 +The Cenatus Family req. Eugena Miejlan
Monday, April 5
8:00 +Wilhelmina-Belia Falek-Roerhoso req. Priests of the Parish
12:10 + John & Angelina Pascale req. John Pascale
Tuesday, April 6
8:00 +Virginia Carr req. Marie Carr
12:10 +Eva, Charles, Sr., Nicholas Kronk, Mary Fedonchuk req. Mary Churley
Wednesday, April 7
8:00 +Margaret M. Timon req. Thomas A. Timon
12:10 +Joan O’Brien req. Ann Armstrong
Thursday, April 8
8:00 Special Intentions Ms. Mary Callahan
12:10 +Bryan Alva req. Ferry G
Friday, April 9
8:00 +Deceased relatives of Joseph W. Callahan
12:10 +Catherine Pascale req. John Pascale
Saturday, April 10
8:00 +Joseph & Hope McAleer req. The McAleer Family
12:10 Deborah & Brazlia Walker req. Betty McDonald

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 8 am Mass. Just walk in.

The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society . . .meets Saturdays in the Rectory, at 9:30 a.m. for coffee, conversation, Rosary, and a spiritual conference. All ladies of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

Moms & Tots . . . Moms and their kids meets each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30 a.m. Please join us.

Religious Education. . . Sundays at 8:30 a.m. Sunday Mass attendance is a duty for all students and Catholic parents.

Convert class [RCIA]. . .Tuesday Evenings 7:30 pm—8:30 pm in the rectory. Call Fr. Walsh, ext. 14.

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

St. Dominic Savio Society. . . . For the spiritual formation of young men from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert 203-324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, please contact Suzanna Bosthwick, 203-554-2004.

The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory.

The Legion of Mary. . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30pm in the rectory. All are welcome.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory All are welcome.

Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory.

Bible Study. . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory. Join us.

Coffee Hour. . . After the 10:00 a.m. Mass. All are welcome.

St. John’s in the Advocate:
100 years ago, or so:
April 11, 1911: Father O’Brien in Norwalk. “Rev. J.C. O’Brien will be the preacher at vespers in St. Joseph’s, Norwalk, tomorrow evening. The Norwalk Hour says: “Father O’Brien is perhaps the best known priest in Fairfield County, having labored in Stamford, Bridgeport, and New Milford for the past twenty-five years. Wherever he has preached, he has invariably drawn large congregations because of his zeal, earnestness, and the practical and convincing way he treats his subject. South Norwalk is to be congratulated in securing the services of Father O’Brien and his many friends as well as those who wish to hear him should fill the church to its capacity on Sunday evening.” (EDITOR’S NOTE: The Rev. James C. O’Brien was pastor of St. John’s from 1900 to 1928.)

75 years ago, or so:
April 6, 1934: Former Local Girl Now a Nun, to Speak Here on Sunday at 3. “The Children of Mary of St. John’s R.C. Church will sponsor an illustrated lecture given by the Sisters from Maryknoll, New York, in the school hall, Sunday afternoon, at 3. One of the Sisters, who is expected to take part in the lecture, will be Sister Mary Corieta, formerly Miss Rita Herrgen of Garden St. All members of the Sodality are invited to bring their relatives and friends. A musical program will follow.”

April 11, 1936: EASTER MUSIC TO FEATURE CHURCH SERVICES TOMORROW. “Happy Easter, most joyous day in the Christian calendar, when the bunnies will bring good things to children and m’lady will don finery for the fashion parade, will be observed, tomorrow, with special music and sermons in Roman Catholic churches. The boys’ sanctuary choir will sing at the 10 o’clock Mass at St. John’s R.C. Church. Music will include “Regina Caeli,” anon; “In this Sacrament sweet Jesus,” ancient Irish melody; “Landa Jerusalem Dominum,” special arrangement; “Alleluia, let the Holy anthem Rise,” Tombelli. Music at the High Mass at 11 will include Kyrie from “Missa de Angelis,” Gregorian XV Century; “Gloria,” Gregorian: credo, “Gregorian Interpolated,” Tassi; offertory, “O Sacrum Convivium,” Roberts-Remondi; sanctus, “Missa Brevia,” “Benedictus and Agnus Dei,” Nicola Montoni; recessional, “Regina Coeli Jubila,” Michaele Praetorius. Accompaniests will be Rudolph Svec, cello: Thomas Collis, bass viol and Frank Smith, violin..”

Christ our Light– Fr. Terry Walsh
“I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly” (Jn 10:10)
My first year of Theology in Major Seminary was the Jubilee Year, 2000. Naturally, the Church offered many special graces for the faithful throughout the world. One of those graces was the chance to view the Shroud of Turin, the burial garment of our Lord. On our first free weekend, 15 of my classmates and I took the overnight train from Rome to Turin so that we might have a glimpse of the Holy Shroud. It was an amazing experience, a grace filled moment. One of the most startling things I learned about the Shroud was that the Image left upon the cloth was the result of a “Radiant Light” characteristic of a Nuclear Blast. It was the immediate image left at the moment of His Resurrection. He has Risen! He is God! And he has come to rescue his sheep and to put His enemies beneath His feet. The Light will not be extinguished. He has triumphed over death and offers life to all who follow Him.
Light shines on the darkness and reveals the Truth. Darkness, on the other hand, reminds us of falsehood, of sin, and ultimately of death. In John’s Gospel we hear these words: “In Him [the Word, Jesus Christ] was life, and the life was the light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it…. The True Light that enlightens every man was coming into the world.”
Consider Jesus’ miraculous birth in the Stable. Indeed, throughout His public Ministry, He enlightened all his witnesses by miracle after miracle, teaching after teaching, enlightening all who followed Him. At His Transfiguration, His glory was revealed once again in blinding light. How is it then that so many remained in the dark?
As Jesus’ “Hour” approached, the true intentions of the hearts of all were made manifest. Many preferred the “cozy cave of ignorance” rather than the “Light of Christ.” In order to receive the Light, the human heart must be willing to let go of false teachings that may seem “comfortable” and instead freely choose to walk in the Light – even when that walk requires some extra effort. To leave what is comfortable can be difficult. Contemplating Jesus words requires humility and a desire for Truth. Putting those words into action requires some work, perhaps even some manner of purification, which would naturally involve some measure of suffering. In the end, it becomes a decision to love. There is no love without sacrifice.
Sadly, many looked upon Jesus as one who simply drew attention to Himself for some selfish reason. They accused Him of bringing division to the so-called “community.” Their hearts were in the dark and their lack of humility revealed their own selfish desires. Their refusal to be transformed by the Light ultimately led to shouts of “Crucify Him!” They sought to extinguish the Light. They missed the point entirely. Jesus came to give life. But they “had not the love of God within them”(John 5:42).
As they mocked him while he suffered His frightful agony upon the Cross, their pride punctuated a false victory over He who exposed their deceit, their contempt for God. Opening His side with the lance, the final blow of hate, would instead reveal the Light of Truth. The Blood and Water that flowed from His Wounded Sacred Heart became the very Light of divine grace that would wash away the darkness. In His Glorified Body, streams of Healing Light beam from His Merciful Heart and all who seek Him with humility and love are filled with this Light. “I am the Light of the world; he who follows me will have the Light of Life”(John 8:12). “If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.”
We receive this Light most abundantly through the Sacraments. It is precisely sacramental grace that transforms our souls making us holy; sacrament grace imparts wisdom, knowledge, understanding, counsel, piety, fortitude, as well as awe and wonder. As we grow in grace, we walk more and more in the Light. It’s that simple. It is the “well lit path” that leads to Heaven. When we walk in the Light we will not fall into the snags and potholes of falsehoods, lies, deceits, and spiritual laziness that try to derail us from union with God. We just need to take that 1st step – that act of faith in our heart. Open the door just a crack and let the Radiant Light of Christ lead you from the darkness into the warmth and peace and joy and happiness of life IN HIM. He has Risen! He has come to give life…
HAPPY EASTER

Bulletin for Sunday March 28, 2010

For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday March 28, 2010

Pastor ’s Corner. . .This is another sermon by Pope Saint Leo the Great: “The true worshipper of the Lord in his Passion should look upon the crucified Jesus with the eyes of the heart and recognize in Jesus’ flesh his own. For there is no one so weak that the victory of the Cross fails him, no one whom Christ’s prayer cannot help. If Christ did good to those who raged against him, how much more to those who turn to him? He has pierced through our ignorance and strengthened us in our weakness; his holy blood has turned aside the flaming sword that was brandished over our lives. The darkness of ancient night has yielded to his true light.
“Let us, then, not be so arrogantly and anxiously immersed in the business of our present life that we do no strive wholeheartedly to follow the example of our Redeemer and to become like him. Everything he did and endured was for our salvation so that the power inherent in the Head [Christ] might enter into the members of the Body [us, as members of His Church] as well.”
“When God took our mortal substance unto himself and ‘the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, what man, save the unbeliever, was excluded from his merciful embrace? Who cannot recognize his own weakness in Christ’s? Who cannot see that in his nature as our fellow-servant, Christ ate and slept, was sad and wept in his loving concern for others?”
“Our nature was to be healed of its ancient wounds and purified of the infection of sin. Therefore the Only-begotten of God became one of the sons of men that he might have not only the fullness of divinity but an authentic manhood as well. It was for our sake that he lay lifeless in the tomb and rose on the third day and ascended to the right hand of the Father’s majesty. If we walk in the way of his commandments and are not ashamed to confess our sins, we shall share his glory” [Sermon 15, On the Lord’s Passion].

This is from a sermon by Saint Macarius: “Woe to the ship if the pilot abandons it, for it shall be tossed by waves and storms and be wrecked! Woe to the soul if it does not have the Lord for its Pilot, for it shall be battered by the dark spirits, and must perish at last!
“Woe to the earth if no farmer tills it! Woe to the soul if Christ does not cultivate it and enable it to yield the good fruits of the Spirit! Once abandoned, it will be filled with thorns and thistles, and its yield will be fit for naught but burning! Woe to the heart in which Christ its Lord does not dwell! Once abandoned, it will overflow with evil attachments and become the prey of every vice.”
“As a farmer takes suitable tools with him when he goes out to till the soil, so Christ, the heavenly King and true Farmer, took a body and a Cross as his tools when he came to desolated mankind in order to till the soil of souls. He cleared it of the thorns of evil affections and the weeds of sin. When he had tilled it with the ploughshare of the Cross, he planted in it the beautiful gardens of the Spirit, which would produce sweet fruits of every kind for God its Lord” [Sermon 28]. —Mons. DiGiovanni

Please plan to attend the Holy Week ceremonies of the Triduum:
April 1: Holy Thursday at 8:00 pm: Mass of the Lord’s Supper, with adoration until midnight;
April 2: Good Friday at 3:00 pm: the Commemoration of the Lord’s Passion;
April 3: Holy Saturday at 8:00 pm: the Easter Vigil, the solemn celebration of Easter.

Please pray for the sick. . . Robert Lebeau, Connie Ward, Cheryl Carucci, Jerry Pellegrino, Joan Bachman, Irene Zelinsky, Nicholas Czekanski, Wilfred Baretto, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Mary Moriarty, Carmella Micik, Julie Grant, Lois Porter, Joseph Lasko, Billy Therriault, Wendy Woodin, Janet Rodgers, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans, Margaret Romaine.

Please pray for those who have recently died. . . Paul Jankowicz, James Thomas, Marjorie L. O’Kane, Lawrence Schmidt Jr., Catherine B. Pullen, Wilhelmina-Belia Falek-Roerhost, Keith Segovia, Frank L. Infante, Dolores A. Deluca Freccia, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Roshah E. DeJean, Paul Reda, Katherine Dziezyc, John Castellano, Eugene Lops, Msgr. Lawrence McMahon, Rev. Al Russo, George “Bud” Ayers, William Wolf, Alfred Gautrau, David Lloyd, Evelyn Mahan, Joseph Logsdail, Peggy Pikul, Monsignor John Horgan Kung, Theodore Pikul, Rosemary Hynes Finn, George T. Murphy, William Morris, Jesus Cala, Liliane Joelle Tsemo, Elizabeth A. Coughlin, Hector Jance, Paul Rittman.

Mass On Line. . .Visit the parish website: www.stjohnsstamford.com, click the photo of the church up top, and you’ll see live all that’s going on in church, daily. (Note: Audio requires “ActiveX” which is specifically designed to work with Windows systems [i.e. Internet Explorer]. “ActiveX” by Microsoft is not supported on other operating systems such as Apple “Mac OS” or “GNU/Linux.”) 

Holy Week Confessions. . .Tuesday evening: 7:00 – 9:00 P.M., Monday through Wednesday and Sunday, 30 minutes before each Mass. Holy Thursday & Good Friday: 11:30-12noon. Holy Saturday 3:00 – 4:00 pm.

GOOD FRIDAY FAST AND ABSTINENCE . . .On Good Friday, all Catholics age 14 and older are obliged to abstain from eating meat, and all Catholics in good health between the ages of 18 and 60 are also obliged to fast. Abstinence means not eating meat or meat products; fasting means having only one full meal and two light meals during the day, with no snacks between meals. Drinking water or taking medicine or vitamins does not break a fast. Good Friday is a day of both abstinence and fasting, a means of sharing in Christ’s sacrifice for our salvation.

Tenebrae: The traditional psalm service introducing the Sacred Triduum will be offered on Wednesday March 31st at 8:00 pm in the Basilica. All are welcome.

St. Monica Institute. . . will NOT meet on Wednesday.

Biblical Greek Class . . . will NOT meet on Holy Thursday evening.

The Parish Ladies’ Group . . . will NOT meet on Holy Saturday morning.

The Eagle. . .A new parish publication, edited by our own Dr. Joseph McAleer, will provide a variety of interesting articles each month on theology, the spiritual life, Catholic cultural life and even reviews of local restaurants, bakeries and other neighborhood emporia.

A NIGHT AT THE OPERA. . . Please join us Saturday May 1st at 7:00 pm in the church for a Live Performance featuring Stars of the Metropolitan Opera. Proceeds will benefit the ongoing restoration of our historic church. For ticket and sponsorship information please call 203-324-1553, ext.21 or register on the parish website www.stjohnsstamford.com.
THIS CONCERT WILL NOT BE BROADCAST ON THE PARISH CAMERAS.

Sunday March 21, 2010 $ 14,077.00
Sunday March 22, 2009 $ 13,205.97

“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

Easter Sunday Readings: Acts 10:34a, 37-43; Ps 118:1-2, 16-17, 22-23; Col 3:1-4; Lk 24: 13-35.

Grand Concert to Benefit Haiti . . . The Stamford Symphony and the Choir of the Basilica of St. John will present the famous Requiem by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart on Sunday, April 11 at 7:30 PM. A benefit concert for the victims of the earthquake in Haiti, 100% of the proceeds will go to Haitian relief efforts. The concert will be conducted by Maestro Eckart Preu, the chorus prepared by Scott Turkington. While no entrance fee will be required, a suggested donation of $25.00 will go far toward raising needed funds to aid those now suffering in Haiti. Donors wishing to contribute $50.00 or more will be listed in the Donors’ Circle section of the printed program and will have reserved seating. Please see the St. John’s website for more information. THIS CONCERT WILL NOT BE BROADCAST ON THE PARISH CAMERAS.

Hymns for this weekend. . . (1) 60 (2) 67.

Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass
Mass Ordinary: Missa brevis – Antonio Lotti, 1667-1740.
All are encouraged to sing the Creed at the Noon Mass, which may be found in the hymnal at No. 289. The Creed is sung alternating with the choir at each double bar line.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Judica me Deus (Vindicate me, O God, and defend my cause against an ungodly nation; from wicked and deceitful men deliver me, for you are my God and my strength. Send forth your light and your truth; these have led me and brought me to your holy mountain and to your dwelling place. [Ps. 43:1,2,3]); Tract Sæpe expugnaverunt me (Often have they fought against me from my youth. Let Israel now say: Often have they fought against me from my youth. Yet, they have not prevailed against me: my back has become an anvil for the hammering of sinners. They have long oppressed me with their iniquities. But the Lord of justice will break the necks of sinners. [Psalm 129:1-4]); Offertory Confitebor tibi (I will praise you, O Lord, with my whole heart; deal bountifully with your servant, that I may live and observe your word; revive me according to your word, O Lord. [Psalm 119:7,10,17,25]); Communion Nemo te condemnavit (“Woman, has no one condemned you?” – “No one, Lord.” – Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.” [John 8:10,11]).
Offertory Motet: Vere languores nostros – Tomás Luis de Victoria, 1548-1611 (Surely he hath borne our griefs and carried our sorrows. And with his stripes we are healed. Sweetest wood and sweetest iron, sweetest weight is hung on Thee. Thou alone wast counted worthy to uphold the King of heaven and Lord of all. [Responsory 3 at Tenebrae, Wednesday in Holy Week]).
Communion Motets: Crucifixus a 8 – Antonio Lotti, 1667-1740 (He was crucified also for us, under Pontius Pilate: he suffered and was buried. [from the Nicene Creed]); Miserere mei – William Byrd, 1540-1623 (Have mercy upon me, O God, after thy great goodness; according to the multitude of thy mercies do away mine offences. [Ps. 50:1]).
Postlude: Psalm 50 – Tonus peregrinus.

Marriage Anniversaries. . . Bishop Lori will celebrate a Mass for couples observing their 15th—50th—plus wedding anniversaries this year on April 25th at 3:00 PM at St. Theresa Church, Trumbull. Please call St. John’s rectory [203-324-1553, ext 21] to register.

Annual Bishop’s Appeal. . .Our Parish goal is $85,000. Please be generous to Bishop Lori.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, March 27
4:00 +James Berger req. Eileen & Robert
Sunday, March 28
7:30 Frank Janesch req. The Cycon Family
10:00 Special Intentions Carmen Morales Birthday req. Mother
12:00 +William M. Borkowski req. Michael Ann Borkowski
6:00 +Sylvina Hanley req. Jim Berry
Monday, March 29
8:00 +Mr. Joseph M. Callahan req. Maryella Callahan
12:10 Paul Gelaj req. Hana
Tuesday, March 30
8:00 Special Intentions Monika req. Ewa Czytowska
12:10 +Michel & Chener Jean-Guillaume req. Brothers
Wednesday, March 31
8:00 +Mrs. Mary M. Callahan req. Maryella Callahan
12:10 Souls in Purgatory
8:00PM Service of Tenebrae: An evening service of psalms, responses & readings composing the Matins & Lauds for Holy Thursday. Chanted Psalms with Choral Motets by Croce & Viadana.

TRIDUUM SACRUM
HOLY THURSDAY, April 1-The church remains open until 12 midnight for Eucharistic Adoration
NO 8AM or 12:10PM Masses
8:00PM: Mass of the Lord’s Supper: People of the Parish

GOOD FRIDAY, April 2
NO 8 AM or 12:10 pm Masses
3:00PM Liturgy of Lord’s Passion

HOLY SATURDAY, April 3
NO 8AM, 12:10 PM or 4 PM MASSES
8:00PM Easter Vigil: People of the Parish

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 8 am Mass. Just walk in.

The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society . . .meets Saturdays in the Rectory, at 9:30 a.m. for coffee, conversation, Rosary, and a spiritual conference. All ladies of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

Moms & Tots . . . Moms and their kids meets each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30 a.m. Please join us.

Religious Education. . . Sundays at 8:30 a.m. Sunday Mass attendance is a duty for all students and Catholic parents.

Convert class [RCIA]. . .Tuesday Evenings 7:30 pm—8:30 pm in the rectory. Call Fr. Walsh, ext. 14.

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

St. Dominic Savio Society. . . . For the spiritual formation of young men from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert 203-324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, please contact Suzanna Bosthwick, 203-554-2004.

The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory.

The Legion of Mary. . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30pm in the rectory. All are welcome.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory All are welcome.

Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory.

Bible Study. . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory. Join us.

Coffee Hour. . . After the 10:00 a.m. Mass. All are welcome.

St. John’s in the NEWS:
140 years ago, or so:
The Stamford Advocate:
April 1, 1870:IMPROVEMENTS. “Mr. A.J. Bell has opened a new street, (which should be called “Bell Street”) from Atlantic to South street, through his property near the Congregational church. He has already built a model blacksmith shop for Wm. A. Lockwood, and intends to build large additions on the south row of houses, and make them front on the new street. In time he will probably put up a block of stores on the corner of the new street and Atlantic, immediately opposite to the lot owned by the Roman Catholic Society, on which, it is said, an elegant stone church is to be built.”

125 years ago, or so:
The Connecticut Catholic:
April 4, 1885: STAMFORD. “On Sunday a collection will be taken up at all the Masses for the benefit of the seminarians, in accordance with the circular from our Reverend Bishop, read on last Sunday. The Lenten exercises will close on this week; on Easter Sunday, the devotion and singing will especially be very fine. The altar will be tastefully decorated with flowers. On Sunday evening a sermon will be delivered by Father Synnott of Bridgeport, when Vespers will take place instead of the afternoon. A new choir consisting of about 24 boys from our parochial schools, will make its appearance for the first time, through the efforts of Father Skelly.”

75 years ago, or so:
The stamford advocate:
March 29, 1934: FATHER CARROLL TELLS STORY OF HOLY THURSDAY IN ST JOHN’S R.C. CHURCH. “At the last of his series of Lenten services in St. John’s R.C. Church last night, the Rev. James F. Carroll of the Holy Ghost Fathers at Ferndale, told the story of Holy Thursday, of the arrest, trial and sentence of Jesus. He spoke also of the significance of the crucifixion. He referred to Christ’s death on the Cross as “the substitution of God-made man in the place of sinning humanity for the redemption of the world.” and said sin was to be punished in Him that was innocent. “Is it any wonder that the eyes of all the world are turned every decade to the little town of Oberammergan where the Passion Play is given?” he asked. He said that the first act in the great drama of the crucifixion concerns the arrest in the garden of Gethsemane, which took place on Holy Thursday after the Holy Eucharist. He told how Christ said “My father, if it be possible, may this chalice pass from me” and explained that Christ was to atone for every sin down to the very last sin.”

Prophecies Fulfilled…. – Fr. Terry Walsh
The Prophet Isaiah lived 750 years before the Incarnation; that is, before the second Person of the Holy Trinity left His Heavenly Throne and came to rescues us from death, taking the sins of the world upon Himself through a terrible suffering and an ignominious death upon the Cross. Isaiah speaks of His Sacrificial love centuries before it takes place. These prophesies help us understand the depth of God’s love for us.
“I gave my back to those who beat me, my cheeks to those who plucked my beard; my face I did not shield from buffets and spitting. The Lord is my help, therefore I am not disgraced; I have set my face like flint, knowing that I shall not be put to shame”(Is. 50:6).
St. Matthew records the fulfillment of this prophecy: “Then they spat in His face and struck him; and some slapped Him, saying, ‘Prophesy to us, you Christ! Who is it that struck you?’”(Mt 26:67).
“Even as many were amazed at Him – so marred was His look beyond that of a man, and His appearance beyond that of mortals”(Is. 52:14). The Letter to the Hebrews writes of the effect of this suffering: “Although He was a Son, He learned obedience through what He suffered; and being made perfect He became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey Him…”(5:8).

The entire 53rd chapter of the Book of Isaiah tells of the Suffering Servant and would be a wonderful source of meditation throughout Holy Week as we approach the Passion. After meditating on the prophecies of Isaiah, it would be helpful to reflect upon their fulfillment in the New Testament (consider the following Scripture passages for fruitful meditation: Matthew chapter 8: verse17; 26:62-63; 21:1-5; 26:14-15; 27:57-60; Romans 3:21-26; 4:5-8; 5: 6-8; Acts of the Apostles 8:28-35; the 1st letter of Peter 2:21-25 are but a few points of reflection. Likewise, the Psalms speak eloquently of our Lord’s Passion and Death. Most notably perhaps is Psalm 22, which begins with a cry of abandonment but ends with great hope. In addition, Psalms 16, 27, 31, 33, 41, 49, 55, 69, 86, 88, and 109 all reflect the suffering Jesus would endure for our sake.

The Suffering Servant is at the same time the Victor. He came to “crush the head of the serpent” – to conquer sin and ultimately death – and to restore life to his people. Isaiah writes: “I will extol and praise your name; for you have fulfilled your wonderful plans of old, faithful and true….For you are a refuge to the poor, a refuge to the needy in distress;/ Shelter from the rain, shade from the heat….On this Holy Mountain the Lord of Hosts will provide for all peoples, / A feast of rich food and pure, choice wines./ On this mountain he will destroy the veil that veils all peoples, / The web that is woven over all nations;/ he will destroy death forever. / The Lord God will wipe away the tears from all faces”(Isaiah 25).

Finally, it is important to reflect upon the love and humility of Jesus. St. Paul writes beautiful canticles in his various letters that sing the praises of so magnificent sacrifice. In his letter to the Philippians 2: 6-11, Paul writes: “[Jesus], though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God something to be grasped. Rather, he emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, coming in human likeness; and found human in appearance, he humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, even death on a Cross. Because of this, God greatly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, of those in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
He did it for love of us.

Bulletin for Sunday March 21, 2010

For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday March 21, 2010

Pastor ’s Corner. . .March offers two great solemnities: the 19th was that of Saint Joseph, Husband of Mary; and the 25th will be the Solemnity of the Annunciation. They both involve the Mystery of our salvation in Christ: the 19th: Saint Joseph willingly sacrificed his hoped for joys of being a father when asked by God to do so for one reason: for love of God, and to play a far greater role as the foster father of the Savior, and the protector of the Mother of God. The opening prayer for the day expresses this perfectly: “Almighty God, in its beginning you entrusted the mystery of mankind’s salvation to the faithful protection of Saint Joseph. By his intercession may your Church. . .bring that salvation to full flower.”
The ancient name for the Annunciation on the 25th was “the Feast of the Incarnation”, when the Word [the Second Person of the Trinity; the Eternal Son of the Father] took to Himself our human nature in the womb of Blessed Virgin Mary in Nazareth after she said to the angel Gabriel, “Be it done unto me according to thy word” [Luke 1:38]. It was exactly then that, by the overshadowing of the Holy Spirit, a body was fashioned from the Virgin’s flesh and blood, a rational soul was created and infused into that body [as in every instance of human conception in the womb of a mother], and, in the same instant, the complete human nature was united to the Divine Person of the Father’s eternal Son. God became a human being at the moment of his conception in the Virgin’s womb. That is what the Church celebrates on March 25th–Nine months before Christmas. Why did God become a man? In order to redeem mankind on the Cross. God’s love for sinful mankind is so strong that He determined to save us by entering into man’s actual destiny, experiencing our very life, suffering, death and Hell, in order to free us by means of solidarity with us, and raising us to share His divine life forever. The God who feels no pain and knows no change because He is perfect and eternal, assumed a human nature and body like ours in order to suffer and to offer it in sacrifice, so that the whole human person might obtain eternity. Pope Saint Leo the Great described it, “He descended into what is ours [our human nature and body] to assume not just the substance but also the condition of sinful nature” [Sermon 71, 2]. Some of the earliest Church Fathers reckoned that March 25th was both the day of Adam’s creation and fall into sin, as well as the date of God’s Incarnation, and Christ’s death on Calvary: the second Adam [Christ] coming to rescue the first Adam by taking on flesh and sacrificing that flesh on the Cross. While the dating is whimsical, the reality is clearly expressed: Christ, the new Adam, came to save the old Adam [ and us, the offspring of the first parents]. A medieval author’s version runs: “Hail festive day [March 25th], that staunches our wounds, the Angel is sent, Christ dies on the Cross, and Adam is created and falls on the same day” [Summa Aurea, vol. I, 602]. Another medieval poem claimed that Christ’s Cross was fashioned from the wood of an apple tree, since mankind’s fall came when Adam picked and ate that forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. Poetically, the reality is expressed: the final goal of the Incarnation—God becoming man—is the Cross. But there is more: God became a man to redeem us not only from but for something: from the effects of sin, death, and for entry, by grace, into the life of the Blessed Trinity. The Three Divine Persons contribute to our salvation in the Incarnation, in order that we might share their life. St. John of the Cross expressed this in one of his poems: “Though the Three Persons worked the wonder, it only happened in the One, so was the Word made incarnate, in Mary’s womb, a Son” [Prosigue la Encarnacion, 8]. The Incarnation, the Death and Resurrection of Jesus on the Cross, and Pentecost, the beginning of the Church, are all expressions of God’s love in the reality of our life, to lead us to share the life of the Trinity forever. —Mons. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick. . . Robert Lebeau, Connie Ward, Cheryl Carucci, Jerry Pellegrino, Joan Bachman, Irene Zelinsky, Nicholas Czekanski, Wilfred Baretto, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Mary Moriarty, Carmella Micik, Julie Grant, Lois Porter, Joseph Lasko, Billy Therriault, Wendy Woodin, Janet Rodgers, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans, Margaret Romaine.

Please pray for those who have recently died. . . Paul Jankowicz, James Thomas, Marjorie L. O’Kane, Lawrence Schmidt Jr., Catherine B. Pullen, Wilhelmina-Belia Falek-Roerhost, Keith Segovia, Frank L. Infante, Dolores A. Deluca Freccia, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Roshah E. DeJean, Paul Reda, Katherine Dziezyc, John Castellano, Eugene Lops, Msgr. Lawrence McMahon, Rev. Al Russo, George “Bud” Ayers, William Wolf, Alfred Gautrau, David Lloyd, Evelyn Mahan, Joseph Logsdail, Peggy Pikul, Monsignor John Horgan Kung, Theodore Pikul, Rosemary Hynes Finn, George T. Murphy, William Morris, Jesus Cala, Liliane Joelle Tsemo, Elizabeth A. Coughlin, Hector Jance, Paul Rittman.

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

Confession. . . During Lent, St. John’s will offer Confession each Tuesday evening, from 7:00 – 9:00 P.M. We also continue the usual daily Confessions, Monday through Friday and Sunday, 30 minutes before each Mass. Saturday Confessions are offered 3:00 – 4:00 pm.

Stations of the Cross. . . Fridays during Lent: 4:00 p.m.—English, & 6:00 p.m.—Creole

Mass On Line. . .Visit the parish website: www.stjohnsstamford.com, click the photo of the church up top, and you’ll see live all that’s going on in church, daily. (Note: Audio requires “ActiveX” which is specifically designed to work with Windows systems [i.e. Internet Explorer]. “ActiveX” by Microsoft is not supported on other operating systems such as Apple “Mac OS” or “GNU/Linux.”) 

Farewell Reception. . . Sunday, March 21st at 1:15pm in the parish hall, to say “Thanks” to Scott Turkington as he prepares for his new work at the cathedral in Charleston. All are welcome.

The Eagle. . .A new parish publication, edited by our own Dr. Joseph McAleer, will provide a variety of interesting articles each month on theology, the spiritual life, Catholic cultural life and even reviews of local restaurants, bakeries and other neighborhood emporia.

THE SHROUD of TURIN. . . Donald H Nohs will return to St. John’s on March 27th, the Vigil of Palm Sunday, at 7 pm to repeat a special presentation on the Shroud of Turin. Full-sized photographic replicas of the Shroud will be displayed, as well as full-sized replicas of the Crown of Thorns, the Nails, and the Spear that pierced Our Lord’s side. The Presentation will take place in the Church. All are welcome: no charge.

A NIGHT AT THE OPERA. . . Please join us Saturday May 1st at 7:00 pm in the church for a Live Performance featuring Stars of the Metropolitan Opera. Proceeds will benefit the ongoing restoration of our historic church. For ticket and sponsorship information please call 203-324-1553, ext.21 or register on the parish website www.stjohnsstamford.com.
THIS CONCERT WILL NOT BE BROADCAST ON THE PARISH CAMERAS.

Statues are covered. . . So nothing distracts us from focusing on Jesus’ loving sacrifice for us. Crosses are covered until Good Friday, when we recall His saving death. Statues of the saints are uncovered at Holy Saturday: with Jesus’ resurrection, we can become saints through Him.

Sunday March 14, 2010 $ 9,153.00 (Nor’easter Storm)
Sunday March 15, 2009 $ 12,987.10

“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
–Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

March 28th Palm Sunday Readings: Lk 19:28-40; Is 50:4-7; Phil 2:6-11; Lk 22:14-23: 56.

Grand Concert to Benefit Haiti . . . The Stamford Symphony and the Choir of the Basilica of St. John will present the famous Requiem by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart on Sunday, April 11 at 7:30 PM. A benefit concert for the victims of the earthquake in Haiti, 100% of the proceeds will go to Haitian relief efforts. The concert will be conducted by Maestro Eckart Preu, the chorus prepared by Scott Turkington. While no entrance fee will be required, a suggested donation of $25.00 will go far toward raising needed funds to aid those now suffering in Haiti. Donors wishing to contribute $50.00 or more will be listed in the Donors’ Circle section of the printed program and will have reserved seating. Please see the St. John’s website for more information. THIS CONCERT WILL NOT BE BROADCAST ON THE PARISH CAMERAS.

Hymns for this weekend . . . (1) 50 (2) 69 [Tune: Picardy].

Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass
Mass Ordinary: Mass for Four Voices – William Byrd, 1540-1623.
All are encouraged to sing the Creed at the Noon Mass, which may be found in the hymnal at No. 289. The Creed is sung alternating with the choir at each double bar line.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Judica me Deus (Vindicate me, O God, and defend my cause against an ungodly nation; from wicked and deceitful men deliver me, for you are my God and my strength. Send forth your light and your truth; these have led me and brought me to your holy mountain and to your dwelling place. [Ps. 43:1,2,3]); Tract Sæpe expugnaverunt me (Often have they fought against me from my youth. Let Israel now say: Often have they fought against me from my youth. Yet, they have not prevailed against me: my back has become an anvil for the hammering of sinners. They have long oppressed me with their iniquities. But the Lord of justice will break the necks of sinners. [Psalm 129:1-4]); Offertory Confitebor tibi (I will praise you, O Lord, with my whole heart; deal bountifully with your servant, that I may live and observe your word; revive me according to your word, O Lord. [Psalm 119:7,10,17,25]); Communion Nemo te condemnavit (“Woman, has no one condemned you?” – “No one, Lord.” – Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.” [John 8:10,11]).
Offertory Motet: Call to remembrance – Richard Farrant, c. 1530-1580 (Call to remembrance, O Lord, thy tender mercy and thy loving kindness which hath been ever of old. O remember not the sins and offences of my youth: but according to thy mercy think thou on me, O Lord, for thy goodness. (Psalm 25:5,6).
Communion Motet: Miserere mei – W. Byrd (Have mercy upon me, O God, after thy great goodness; according to the multitude of thy mercies do away mine offences. [Ps. 50:1]).
Postlude: Psalm 50 – Tonus peregrinus.

Marriage Anniversaries. . . Bishop Lori will celebrate a Mass for couples observing their 15th—50th—plus wedding anniversaries this year on April 25th at 3:00 PM at St. Theresa Church, Trumbull. Please call St. John’s rectory [203-324-1553, ext 21] to register.

Annual Bishop’s Appeal. . .Our Parish goal is $85,000. Please be generous to Bishop Lori.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, March 20
4:00 + Jennie Freccia 22nd Anniversary req. The Freccia Family
Sunday, March 21
7:30 + Theron & Lena Carr req. Marie Carr
10:00+ William Lagan req. Patrick & Mary Walsh
12:00 Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
6:00 Joan Bachman req. Legion of Mary, Basilica of St. John
Monday, March 22
8:00+ Xavier Fontaine & Family req. Friends
12:10+ Erma Ernil & Gino Rizzo req. Marion & Phil Giordano
Tuesday, March 23
8:00+ Anthony J. Dowd, Jr. req. Joanne & Charlie Crawley
12:10 Rev. Terrence P. Walsh req. Josephine Languedoc
Wednesday, March 24
8:00 Forgotten Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
12:10 +Eileen Guerin Pendergast req. Dr. Mrs. John F. Centonze
Thursday, March 25
8:00 In Honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary req. Montanise Paulemon
12:10 Forgotten Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.
Friday, March 26
8:00 Souls in Purgatory
12:10+ Barbara Heyman req. Carpanzano Family
Saturday, March 27
8:00+ Katherine Mavrakis req. James & Loraine Rubino
12:10 Zef & Mary Gelaj req. Hana

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 8 am Mass. Just walk in.

The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society . . .meets Saturdays in the Rectory, at 9:30 a.m. for coffee, conversation, Rosary, and a spiritual conference. All ladies of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

Moms & Tots . . . Moms and their kids meets each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30 a.m. Please join us.

Religious Education. . . Sundays at 8:30 a.m. Sunday Mass attendance is a duty for all students and Catholic parents.

Convert class [RCIA]. . .Tuesday Evenings 7:30 pm—8:30 pm in the rectory. Call Fr. Walsh, ext. 14.

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

St. Dominic Savio Society. . . . For the spiritual formation of young men from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert 203-324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, please contact Suzanna Bosthwick, 203-554-2004.

The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory.

The Legion of Mary. . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30pm in the rectory. All are welcome.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory All are welcome.

Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory.

Bible Study. . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory. Join us.

Coffee Hour. . . After the 10:00 a.m. Mass. All are welcome.

St. John’s in the advocate:
100 years ago, or so:
March 25, 1918: STABAT MATER SUNG. “A congregation that filled St. John’s Catholic Church last night listened in rapt attention to the rendition of Rossini’s “Stabat Mater.” The soloists were assisted by a chorus of 35, and the work was rendered in a manner that delighted the listeners and won praise for the singers-chorus as well as soloists. Miss Margaret Hogan, a gifted soprano, of New Haven, was especially effective in her rendition of “The Inflammatus,” and she was also heard with delight in a duet with Miss Margaret Kennedy, “Quis est Homo.”

60 years ago, or so:
March 23, 1953: City Championship-St. John’s State CYO Grammar Titlist. “The Stamford CYO Grammar division champions, the St. John’s basketeers, won the Connecticut title yesterday at St. Stanilaus’ Auditorium in Meriden, defeating the St. Thomas’ five of West Hartford, 41-34. The victory qualified the Stamford team for play in the New England CYO Championships at Providence next Saturday and Sunday. The Johnnies had a championship kick, developing a big fourth quarter surge to overpower the opposition. It was a team effort by the Atlantic St. crew, but Chick Clark with 18 points and Frank Robotti’s 15-point contribution sparked the triumph. Al Rojas, Ed Ciskowski and Don Spillane contributed some fine ball handling to set up baskets made by the sharp-shooting forwards. The defensive play of the St. John’s was adequate when it appeared that the West Hartford team would make a successful comeback.”

40 years ago, or so:
March 28, 1973: Rev. Parent Dies At 64; Pastor Here. “The Rev. Bertrand E. Parent, 64, pastor of St. John’s Roman Catholic Church on Atlantic St., died Tuesday in St. Joseph Hospital where he had been a patient for a month. He lived at the church’s rectory, 279 Atlantic St. Father Parent became pastor at St. John’s in 1963, succeeding the late Right Rev. Monsignor Nicholas P. Coleman. He had been in Stamford from 1954 to 1956 as assistant pastor at St. Mary’s Church. Father Parent was treasurer of St. John Urban Development Corp., which built and operates the St. John Tower housing project on Washington Blvd. He was chaplain of St. Augustine Council of the Knights of Columbus and served on the Governor’s Commission on Alcoholism since 1955. In World War II Father Parent was a chaplain in the Army in the European and Pacific theaters of war. At 10:30 a.m. Friday the Most Rev. Walter W Curtis, STD, will celebrate a Mass of the Resurrection for Father Parent in St. John’s Church.”

Spiritual Blindness
-Fr Terry Walsh
“Take no part in the fruitless works of darkness….Awake, O Sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will give you light.” – Saint Paul

Lent is a season of Conversion: “Repent, and Believe in the Gospel.” It is a season of opportunity. Our Lord is calling us to a deeper, more faithful relationship with Him. But, saying yes to God means turning away from worldliness which very often blind us to our true end, fellowship with God. The world tempts us to look away from God and place attention selfishly on ourselves. Consequently, the efficacy and even the mystery of the Sacraments can be lost. It takes effort to sit still for a few moments and silently reflect on how God is working in our souls; that is, how He mysteriously anoints us and administers supernatural graces that revive us and enable our spiritual eyes grow stronger. We become more adept at discerning truth and purity and holiness through a deeper prayer life and a more faithful reception of the sacraments. In order to bear fruit, we have to put these “gifts of the Holy Spirit” to work, and, in the quiet of our souls, become docile to the path God calls us to travel. When we’re filled with the Holy Spirit, we’ll begin to see as God sees. We won’t be tempted to see as man sees: man who is so fallible, so proud; man who judges on appearances as if he possessed perfect knowledge and understanding. Pride blinds us. It darkens the eyes of our soul and makes us look silly. It beguiles us along a very dangerous path that constantly chips away at our true identity as “Children of the Light.”
In the Gospel of John (chapter 9) we hear the story of the man born blind. Our Lord uses the occasion to teach that He alone is the True Light. Through Him, we are able to see all that is True. Humility is the key. The Pharisees were the leaders of God’s Holy People, but they had lost their way. They were angry men. Why? Well, they were envious of this Jesus. Could it be that they allowed themselves to be caught up in the imagination of their minds? Had they become ‘little kings’ unto themselves? Could it be that they preferred the appearance of being wise and learned and deserving of respect rather than humbly bowing down before God? Had the Pharisees truly been wise, they would have been men of deep prayer and their prayer would have led them to spiritual purity. They would have recognized Who it was that walked in their midst. They would have witnessed through the eyes of love and mercy the manifestation of the divinity of this Jesus, humbly healing the man born blind – relieving his life-long suffering. They would have rejoiced with hearts overflowing in awe and wonder – not only because of his merciful healing, but even more because they would have clearly recognized the Hand of God in their midst. The great Healer was staring right at them! How could they possibly have missed Him? They were looking right at Him! How could they have missed the very One they claimed to be waiting for – the Messiah! How? Well, perhaps they weren’t really looking for Him after all. Perhaps they were really only concerned about satisfying their own worldly desires. Perhaps they allowed their conscience to be formed by the world – and not by God. They weren’t really interested in spiritual purity. They were more interested in filling their greedy hearts with worldly stuff. The man born blind, on the other hand, possessed a great gift, even before Jesus restored his sight. The man born blind was filled with humility. It was his humility that allowed the Holy Spirit to rush upon him. It was his humility that that enabled him to forget himself so that he could focus his attention upon the Anointed One. In the midst of the angry mob, that humble soul overflowed with love and gratitude, declaring unequivocally, “I do believe in the Son of Man!” What could his foes do to harm his radiant soul? They could beat him. Perhaps even kill him. It really didn’t matter – the Son of Man, the Messiah, knew his name – loved him – healed him and “led him beside restful waters and refreshed his soul.” Those arrogant Pharisees couldn’t harm his soul. It was protected. That poor humble man knew well his own identity – he was a soul loved by God – and he in turn offered him thanks and praise!

Bulletin for Sunday March 14, 2010

For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday March 14, 2010

Pastor ’s Corner. . .This homily is by Pope Saint Leo the Great [pope, 440-461] for the Fourth Sunday of Lent: “As the Apostle says: He who thinks himself to stand securely, let him take heed lest he fall [I Cor x, 11], no one is sustained by such strength of mind that he can be certain of his own constancy in virtue.
“Let us then, Dearly Beloved, observe these venerable practices of this most acceptable time of Lent, and with anxious care clean the windows of our soul. For however chastely and soberly we live in this mortal life, we shall yet be soiled by some dust in the course of our earthly journey, and the brightness of our soul, formed to God’s image and likeness, is not so remote from the smoke of every vanity, that it will be unclouded by any stain, and need never to be polished. And if this is needed for even the most guarded souls, how much more is it needed for those who pass almost the whole year in carelessness and perhaps in total neglect? Let us with all charity remind such as these not to flatter themselves, because we cannot see into their consciences, since not even the walls of houses, nor remoteness of place, can conceal anything from the eyes of God. And not alone are the thoughts and actions known to Him, but all that shall yet be thought and done [Rom iv, 13].
“Let no one despise the patience of God’s goodness because his own sins go unpunished [Rom ii, 4]; and think that because he has not felt His wrath he has not offended God. The days of grace of this mortal life are not prolonged, nor the time allotted to the foolish of heart before they cross over to the pains of eternal punishment, unless, while justice holds out its hand, they seek for the medicine of penance.
“Let us then take refuge in the ever present mercy of God, and, so that we may with becoming reverence celebrate the Holy Pasch [Easter] of the Lord, let all the faithful seek to make holy their own hearts. Let harshness give place to mildness, let wrath grow gentle, forgive one another your offences, and let him who seeks to be forgiven be not himself a seeker of vengeance. For when we say: Forgive us our debts, as we also forgive our debtors [Mt vi, 12], we bind ourselves in the most enduring bonds unless we fulfill what we profess. And if the most sacred contract of this prayer has not in every respect been fulfilled, let every man now at least examine his conscience, and gain the pardon of his own sins by forgiving those of others.
“For when the Lord says: If you will forgive men their offences, your heavenly Father will forgive you also your offenses [Mt vi, 14; xviii, 35; Lk vi, 37], what he is here asking is close to each one of us: for the sentence of the Judge will depend on the clemency of the suppliant. For the Just and Merciful Receiver of the prayers of men has laid it down, that our own generosity is the measure of His fairness to ourselves; so that He will not treat with strict justness those whom He finds not eager for revenge. And generosity is becoming to kind and gentle souls. Nothing is more fitting than that a man imitate His Maker, and that as best he can he is a doer of the works of God. For when the hungry are fed, the naked clothed, the sick assisted, are not the hands that give but completing the help God gives, and is not the generosity of the giver also a gift from God? “He Who has no need of a helper to perform His works of mercy, so orders His own omnipotence that it is by means of men and women He comes to the aid of the needy. And rightly do we give thanks to God for the doers of that Charity whose works of mercy are seen in His servants. It was because of this the Lord Himself said to His Disciples: So let your light shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your father who is in heaven
[Mt v, 16]; Who with the same Father and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God forever and ever. Amen. [Leo I, The Spirit of Lent, Patrologia Latina, LIV, 281].—Mons. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick. . . Robert Lebeau, Connie Ward, Cheryl Carucci, Jerry Pellegrino, Joan Bachman, Irene Zelinsky, Nicholas Czekanski, Wilfred Baretto, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Mary Moriarty, Carmella Micik, Julie Grant, Lois Porter, Joseph Lasko, Billy Therriault, Wendy Woodin, Janet Rodgers, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans, Margaret Romaine.

Please pray for those who have recently died. . .Marjorie L. O’Kane, Lawrence Schmidt Jr., Catherine B. Pullen, Wilhelmina-Belia Falek-Roerhost, Keith Segovia, Frank L. Infante, Dolores A. Deluca Freccia, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Roshah E. DeJean, Paul Reda, Katherine Dziezyc, John Castellano, Eugene Lops, Msgr. Lawrence McMahon, Rev. Al Russo, George “Bud” Ayers, William Wolf, Alfred Gautrau, David Lloyd, Evelyn Mahan, Joseph Logsdail, Peggy Pikul, Monsignor John Horgan Kung, Theodore Pikul, Rosemary Hynes Finn, George T. Murphy, William Morris, Jesus Cala, Liliane Joelle Tsemo, Elizabeth A. Coughlin, Hector Jance, Paul Rittman.

American Bishop’s Overseas Collection . . . Please drop your American Bishop’s Overseas Collection envelope into the ONE basket that will be passed at the Offertory. There will only be one collection today.

Confession. . . During Lent, St. John’s will offer Confession each Tuesday evening, from 7:00 – 9:00 P.M. We also continue the usual daily Confessions, Monday through Friday and Sunday, 30 minutes before each Mass. Saturday Confessions are offered 3:00 – 4:00 pm.

Stations of the Cross. . . Fridays during Lent: 4:00 p.m.—English, & 6:00 p.m.—Creole

Mass On Line. . .Visit the parish website: www.stjohnsstamford.com, click the photo of the church up top, and you’ll see live all that’s going on in church, daily. (Note: Audio requires “ActiveX” “which is specifically designed to work with Windows systems (i.e. Internet Explorer). “ActiveX” by Microsoft is not supported on other operating systems such as Apple “Mac OS” or “GNU/Linux.”) 

Trinity Catholic Junior Class. . . will collect old cell phones to earn phone calling cards for our troops abroad. Drop your old cell phones at the Trinity Catholic on Newfield Avenue. Thanks.

The Eagle. . .A new parish publication, edited by our own Dr. Joseph McAleer, will provide a variety of interesting articles each month on theology, the spiritual life, Catholic cultural life and even reviews of local restaurants, bakeries and other neighborhood emporia.
The Eagle is free.

THE SHROUD of TURIN. . . Donald H Nohs will return to St. John’s on March 27th, the Vigil of Palm Sunday, at 7 pm to repeat a special presentation on the Shroud of Turin. Full-sized photographic replicas of the Shroud will be displayed, as well as full-sized replicas of the Crown of Thorns, the Nails, and the Spear that pierced Our Lord’s side. The Presentation will take place in the Church. All are welcome: no charge.

A NIGHT AT THE OPERA. . . Please join us Saturday May 1st at 7:00 pm in the church for a Live Performance featuring Stars of the Metropolitan Opera. Proceeds will benefit the ongoing restoration of our historic church. For ticket and sponsorship information please call 203-324-1553, ext.21 or register on the parish website www.stjohnsstamford.com.
THIS CONCERT WILL NOT BE BROADCAST ON THE PARISH CAMERAS.

Sunday March 7, 2010 $ 12,392.93
Sunday March 8, 2009 $ 12,076.95

“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

March 21st Sunday Readings: Is 43: 16-21; Phil 3:8-14; Jn 8:1-11

Grand Concert to Benefit Haiti . . . The Stamford Symphony and the Choir of the Basilica of St. John will present the famous Requiem by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart on Sunday, April 11 at 7:30 PM. A benefit concert for the victims of the earthquake in Haiti, 100% of the proceeds will go to Haitian relief efforts. The concert will be conducted by Maestro Eckart Preu, the chorus prepared by Scott Turkington. While no entrance fee will be required, a suggested donation of $25.00 will go far toward raising needed funds to aid those now suffering in Haiti. Donors wishing to contribute $50.00 or more will be listed in the Donors’ Circle section of the printed program and will have reserved seating. THIS CONCERT WILL NOT BE BROADCAST ON THE PARISH CAMERAS.

Hymns for this weekend . . . (1) 262 (2) 65.

Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass
Mass Ordinary: Missa quarti toni – Tomás Luis de Victoria, 1548-1611.
All are encouraged to sing the Creed at the Noon Mass, which may be found in the hymnal at No. 289. The Creed is sung alternating, at each double bar line, with the choir.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Lætare Ierusalem (Rejoice, O Jerusalem; and gather round, all you who love her; rejoice in gladness, after having been in sorrow; exult and be replenished with the consolation flowing from her motherly bosom. I rejoiced when it was said unto me: “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” [Cf. Isaiah 66:10,11; Psalm 122]); Tract Qui confidunt (Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion; the inhabitants of Jerusalem shall never be shaken. As the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the Lord is round about his people, from this time forth and for evermore. [Psalm 125:1.2]); Offertory Laudate Dominum (Praise the Lord, for he is loving; sing in honour of his name, for he is gracious. He has accomplished whatever he resolved to do in heaven and on earth. [Psalm 135:3,6]; Communion Ierusalem quae ædificatur ut civitas (Jerusalem, built as a city whose parts are bound firmly together! It is there that the tribes go up, the tribes of the Lord, to give thanks unto your name, O Lord. [Psalm 122:3,4].
Offertory Motet: The ways of Zion do mourn – Michael Wise, 1648-1687, Heidi Vanderwal, soprano; Paul Tipton, bass. (The ways of Zion do mourn, because none come to the solemn feasts. All her gates are desolate: her priests sigh, her virgins are afflicted, and she is in bitterness. For these things I weep, mine eye runneth down with water. Her adversaries are the chief, her enemies prosper; for the Lord hath afflicted her. For the multitude of her transgressions, the Lord hath afflicted her. See, O Lord, and consider, for I am become vile. [Lamentations 1: 4, 5, 11]).
Communion Motet: Peccantem me quotidie – Christóbal de Morales, c. 1500-1553 (The fear of death overwhelms me, who sin every day and do not repent: For in hell is no redemption. Have mercy on me. O God spare me!)

Marriage Anniversaries. . . Bishop Lori will celebrate a Mass for couples observing their 15th—50th—plus wedding anniversaries this year on April 25th at 3:00 PM at St. Theresa Church, Trumbull. Please call St. John’s rectory [203-324-1553, ext 21] to register.

Annual Bishop’s Appeal. . .Our Parish goal is $85,000. Please be generous to Bishop Lori.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, March 13
4:00 + John Evelyn Sexton req. Hannah Young
Sunday, March 14
7:30 Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
10:00 +Dorothy Wargo, Birthday Remembrance req. Family
12:00 Special Intentions Francis Kung req. Joseph & Agnes Kung
6:00 +Marion Dod Rehling req. Tom Donahoe
Monday, March 15
8:00 +Valencia & John Lancaster req. Suzanne Kremheller
12:10 +Rosario D’Amico req. Frank, Brother
Tuesday, March 16
8:00 Thanksgiving to God req. Montanise Paulemon
12:10 John Joseph Tarleton 3rd Birthday
Wednesday, March 17
8:00 +John Maloney req. wife-Mary
12:10 +Thomas Nicastro, Sr. req. Bea & John Centonze
Thursday, March 18
8:00 +Mr. Constantin Gaspard, Fanelia Jean-Pierre & Family req. Nieces & Nephews
12:10 Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.
Friday, March 19
8:00 Special Intentions Anna Margarita Ucero, Birthday
12:10 +Stephen, Irene, Nicholas Churley req. Mary Churley
Saturday, March 20
8:00 Souls in Purgatory
12:10 +Mr. & Mrs. Naissance Jean-Guillaume and Family req. Grand Children

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 8 am Mass. Just walk in.

The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society . . .meets Saturdays in the Rectory, at 9:30 a.m. for coffee, conversation, Rosary, and a spiritual conference. All ladies of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

Moms & Tots . . . Moms and their kids meets each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30 a.m. Please join us.

Religious Education. . . Sundays at 8:30 a.m. Sunday Mass attendance is a duty for all students and Catholic parents.

Convert class [RCIA]. . .Tuesday Evenings 7:30 pm—8:30 pm in the rectory. Call Fr. Walsh, ext. 14.

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

St. Dominic Savio Society. . . . For the spiritual formation of young men from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert 203-324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, please contact Suzanna Bosthwick, 203-554-2004.

The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory.

The Legion of Mary. . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30pm in the rectory. All are welcome.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory All are welcome.

Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory.

Bible Study. . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory. Join us.

Coffee Hour. . . After the 10:00 a.m. Mass. All are welcome.

St. John’s in the advocate:
150 years ago, or so:
March 18, 1864: “Yesterday was St. Patrick’s day, and, contrary to the general rule, the weather was fine in the morning. Mass was celebrated and a sermon preached by Rev. Father O’Neil in the Roman Catholic Church. A full congregation was in attendance.”

100 years ago, or so:
March 17, 1910: FAITH OF ST. PATRICK. Its Influence on Catholic Church in America. Father Tierney’s Lecture. “Rev. John J. Tierney of Brooklyn spoke last evening, in St. John’s R. C. Church, to an audience that taxed its seating capacity. His subject was St. Patrick and his religion, the text being taken from Romans 1:8: “I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.” Father Tierney spoke of the great and good work of St. Patrick in establishing monasteries, convents, schools, etc. throughout Ireland, which he accomplished without any great opposition. Then followed a period of prosperity and peace, which was broken by the invasion by the Danes. This invasion terminated in the glory of Ireland and the defeat and humiliation of the Danes. When the Irish emigrants came to America, they had in their hearts the old faith taught by St. Patrick. But for this, the American Catholic Church would not be what it is today. The foundation as well as the superstructure of the American Church was well built by the Irish emigrant. Continuing, Father Tierney spoke of his own love for his native land. He recounted an incident that happened when he was making a visit to the Emerald Isle, and, catching sight of the green hills, all unmindful of the crowd of passengers on the boat, he leaped up, and, in the exuberance of his spirits, shouted: “Oh Ireland, ye darling! The top of the morning to you”.”

50 years ago, or so:
March 18, 1960: Sodality To Sponsor Talks On Vocations At Tea On Sunday. “A Vocation Tea sponsored by the Senior Sodality of the Blessed Virgin Mary, will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday at St. John’s School hall. Speakers will include the Rt. Rev. Msgr. Nicholas P. Coleman, P.A.V.F, pastor of St. John’s Church; Rev. Vincent P. Cleary, assistant pastor; and two former parishioners, Sister Maureen Reardon and Sister Therese Mary from the Sisters of Mercy Novitiate in Madison. The program will be opened by St. John’s School Glee Club, under the direction of Sister Mary Matthew. The Sodality has invited girls who are interested in the topic of vocations to attend.”

The Living Temple
-Fr. Terry Walsh
In the Book of Revelation, St. John reveals the Vision of Heaven that he was granted by God for our sake. And during the course of His beautiful description of the Heavenly Jerusalem, John speaks so eloquently about the “living water.” He said, “I saw no Temple in the city, for its Temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb…Then he showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the Throne of God and of the Lamb….also, on either side of the river, the Tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit…”(Rev. 21:22ff).
Jesus, of course, is the Lamb of God – He is the Temple. We become – as it were – “living stones” in Him, called to share in the glory of Divine Life. The “water of life” flowing through the Heavenly City is the love of God: the purpose of our existence is to share in that love! Those who respond to His call and open their hearts to God in this earthly journey receive these living waters sacramentally in “Spirit and in Truth” and, some day, perpetually in Heaven. This is all made possible through the One Perfect Sacrifice of Jesus upon the Tree of Life, that is, the Cross. St. Paul reminds us of the cost: “We boast in hope of the glory of God…and Hope does not disappoint – because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” Prayer is the key. The Psalmist cries out: “Oh that today you would hear His voice, harden not your hearts!” But, are we listening? Or are we so caught up in worldly cares and concerns that are hearts have become attached to this world and have actually become deaf to the whispers of the Holy Spirit? The story about the woman at the well (John, chapter 4) helps illustrate the point. She was lost. She seemed so worn out, even bitter. Perhaps, over time, she had become accustomed to a gradual hardening of the heart. She had lost her true identity and took on a sort of defensive posture – imbued with “the spirit of world.” The garden of her soul had become a barren, dusty patch. And although she stood right next to ‘the well of living water,’ Jesus Christ, she did not recognize Him. How often our Lord stands beside us each day. Have we likewise become spiritually deaf to His beckoning? Do we truly recognize Him? Or, have our spiritual wounds turned off the faucet of grace?
When worldly concerns govern our hearts, our true identity becomes hazy – even to the point where we don’t recognize the call to divine life. Like the Samaritan woman, our Lord thirsts for our return to Him. He waits for our humble prayer, the fruit of a ‘repentant spirit.’ “Lord, give me a drink. Lord, heal me.” Lord, give me the grace to pray better and to see the way of living you expect from me. Water the ‘garden of my soul’ with the living waters gushing from your wounded side. Fill me with your love – that I may worship you ‘in Spirit and in Truth’ and so recognize your Presence in my soul. It all begins at the door of confession. What are we holding on to in our souls? What are we carrying in the Bucket we call our heart? What faults and failings – what sins? Are we, like the Samaritan woman, willing to hand them over to God and leave that worldly bucket at His feet that He may empty it through Sacramental Confession? Then, we’ll be free to take up the New Bucket – the one filled with living water.
“If today you hear His voice, harden not your hearts!” The Scriptures caution us: “Do not grieve the Holy Spirit” – that is – don’t neglect reconciliation with God. Ask for forgiveness. Humbly crack open the hard exterior shell and allow true contrition to flow out – and thus enable the healing balm of the Holy Spirit to water your hearts and so direct your souls into the Living Temple.

Bulletin for Sunday March 7, 2010

For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday March 7, 2010

Pastor ’s Corner. . . During the remaining Lenten weekends, I thought it might be of interest to provide you with some Lenten homilies by the Great Church Fathers. We’ll begin with a homily for the Third Sunday of Lent by Pope Saint Leo the Great, who was pope during the years 440-461: “It is the teaching of nature itself to all who believe, that God is to be adored, since heaven and earth, the sea, and all things that are in them, proclaim the goodness and might of their Creator, . . .and call for a giving of thanks from that [one] creature who is endowed with reason. Now [during Lent] a more earnest purification of our hearts is asked of us, as once again we draw near to those solemn days of the Easter Festival of our redemption.
For this is the special nature of the Easter Festival, that the whole Church rejoice in the forgiveness of sin, which has place not alone in those who are reborn in holy baptism, but also in those long since numbered among the adopted children of God. For though baptism causes us to be reborn, there is in all of us a need for daily renewal against the rusting of our nature by sin, and since in every state of soul there is no one who ought not to be better, all should strive that on the day of Redemption no one shall be found in his former sins.
That which becomes every Christian to do at all times, let it be done now more earnestly and more devoutly, so that the apostolic institution of Lent may be fulfilled by your abstinence: not alone in refraining from food, but especially in refraining from wickedness. For since this self denial is practiced to this end, that we may be drawn away from that which kindles the desires of the flesh, no form of self denial should be more practiced than to keep ourselves at all times from unworthy desires, and to abstain from unworthy actions.
Nothing is more profitably joined to worthy and holy fasting than almsgiving, which includes many works of piety under the single name of mercy, so that in this the good will of all the faithful may be equal, though their means may not be. For nothing ever can so stand in the way of the love we owe both to God and to man, that is not free at all times to be of good will.
For the works of compassion are most profitable, and in their very variety they bring this gain to all true Christians, that in the giving of alms not alone have the rich their part, but those also of the middle class, and even the poor; and they who are not alike in their power to give, may yet be alike in the good dispositions of their hearts. For when many gave of their surplus to the Temple treasury, during the time of Jesus, a certain widow put in only two pennies—all she had—and merited to be crowned by this special testimony of Our Lord: that in her humble fulfillment of her duty, her offering was worthy of being praised above all that others had given because they gave from what they did not need.
Should anyone then be so poor as to be unable to give even two pennies to one in need, in the precepts of the Lord he still has that by which he can fulfill the demands of good will: for he who gives in Jesus’ name a cup of cool water to a poor man who thirsts shall receive a reward for his deed [Mt. x: 42]. Such are the simple means the Lord provides, in order that his servants shall be able to win the kingdom of heaven: and so that no poverty shall stand in the way, an example of mercy is given us from a gift of simple cool water. And not for nothing does the Lord also warn us that this cup be given in His Name. For things which of themselves are without monetary value become precious through faith: and that which is given without faith in Christ, however precious it may be, is still empty of all virtue unto justice before God.
Preparing for Easter, exercise these abstinences: Let the spirit of pride, from which all sins come, be driven out by the spirit of humility; and let those who are puffed up with arrogance become mild through forbearance. Let those whom some insult has provoked, become reconciled and seek earnestly to return to the peace of friendship.” —Mons. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick. . . Marjorie O’Kane, Connie Ward, Cheryl Carucci, Jerry Pellegrino, Joan Bachman, Irene Zelinsky, Nicholas Czekanski, Wilfred Baretto, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Mary Moriarty, Carmella Micik, Julie Grant, Lois Porter, Joseph Lasko, Billy Therriault, Wendy Woodin, Janet Rodgers, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans, Margaret Romaine.

Please pray for those who have recently died. . .Lawrence Schmidt Jr., Catherine B. Pullen, Wilhelmina-Belia Falek-Roerhost, Keith Segovia, Frank L. Infante, Dolores A. Deluca Freccia, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Roshah E. DeJean, Paul Reda, Katherine Dziezyc, John Castellano, Eugene Lops, Msgr. Lawrence McMahon, Rev. Al Russo, George “Bud” Ayers, William Wolf, Alfred Gautrau, David Lloyd, Evelyn Mahan, Joseph Logsdail, Peggy Pikul, Monsignor John Horgan Kung, Theodore Pikul, Rosemary Hynes Finn, George T. Murphy, William Morris, Jesus Cala, Liliane Joelle Tsemo, Elizabeth A. Coughlin, Hector Jance, Paul Rittman.

Special Energy Collection . . . The second collection today will be the Special Energy Collection to help pay the Higher Energy and Fuel Costs for the parish. Your generosity is appreciated.

Confession. . . During Lent, St. John’s will offer Confession each Tuesday evening, from 7:30 – 9:00 P.M. We also continue the usual daily Confessions, Monday through Friday and Sunday, 30 minutes before each Mass. Saturday Confessions are offered 3:00 – 4:00 pm.

Stations of the Cross. . . Fridays during Lent: 4:00 p.m. English & 6:00 p.m. Creole

Mass On Line. . .Visit the parish website: www.stjohnsstamford.com, click the photo of the church up top, and you’ll see live all that’s going on in church, daily. (Note: Audio requires “ActiveX” “which is specifically designed to work with Windows systems (i.e. Internet Explorer). “ActiveX” by Microsoft is not supported on other operating systems such as Apple “Mac OS” or “GNU/Linux.”) 

Trinity Catholic Junior Class. . . will collect old cell phones to earn phone calling cards for our troops abroad. Drop your old cell phones at the Trinity Catholic on Newfield Avenue. Thanks.

Eastern Christian Studies. . .at St. Basil’s College, March 19-21; April 23-25. For more information: stbasilcollege.com. Join us for a study of early Eastern Catholic spirituality.

Ecclesiastical Latin Class. . .will be discontinued due to the hectic parish schedule.

St. Monica Institute. . . Will NOT meet on Wednesday, March 10th. Resume, March 17th.

Annual Saint Patrick’s Parade. . . Saturday, March 13th: kicks off at 12 noon on lower Summer Street, and makes its way past the Ferguson Library and through the downtown: great marching bands and Irish dancers. Come and bring the kids.

A NIGHT AT THE OPERA. . . Please join us Saturday May 1st at 7:00 pm in the church for a Live Performance featuring Stars of the Metropolitan Opera. Proceeds will benefit the ongoing restoration of our historic church. For ticket and sponsorship information please call 203-324-1553, ext.21 or register on the parish website www.stjohnsstamford.com.

THE SHROUD of TURIN. . . Mr. Donald H Nohs will return to St. John’s on Saturday, March 27th, the Vigil of Palm Sunday, at 7 pm to offer once again a special presentation on on the Shroud of Turin. Full-sized photographic replicas of the Shroud will be displayed, as well as authentic full-sized replicas of the Crown of Thorns, the Nails, and the Spear that pierced Our Lord’s side. The Presentation will take place in the Church. All are welcome: no charge.

Daylight-Savings Time. . . Begins next Sunday March 14th. Turn clocks forward 1 hour.

Sunday February 28, 2010 $ 13,324.00
Sunday March 1, 2009 $ 12,816.43

“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

March 14th Sunday Readings: Jos 5 : 9a, 10-12; 2 Cor 5: 17-21; Lk 15: 1-3, 11-32.

Grand Concert to Benefit Haiti . . . The Stamford Symphony and the Choir of the Basilica of St. John will present the famous Requiem by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart on Sunday, April 11 at 7:30 PM. A benefit concert for the victims of the earthquake in Haiti, 100% of the proceeds will go to Haitian relief efforts. The concert will be conducted by Maestro Eckart Preu, the chorus prepared by Scott Turkington. While no entrance fee will be required, a suggested donation of $25.00 will go far toward raising needed funds to aid those now suffering in Haiti. Donors wishing to contribute $50.00 or more will be listed in the Donors’ Circle section of the printed program and will have reserved seating.

Hymns for this weekend . . . (1) 54 (2) 62.

Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass
Mass Ordinary: Missa brevis – Antonio Lotti, 1667-1740.
All are encouraged to sing the Creed at the Noon Mass, which may be found in the hymnal at No. 289. The Creed is sung alternating, at each double bar line, with the choir.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Oculi mei (My eyes are forever turned towards the Lord; for he shall release my feet from the snare; look upon me and have mercy on me, for I am abandoned and destitute. Unto you, O Lord, have I lifted up my soul; O my God, I trust in you, let me not be put to shame. [Ps. 25:15,16,1-2]); Tract Ad te levavi (I have lifted my eyes up unto you, who dwell in the heavens. Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hands of their masters, and as the eyes of a maidservant to the hands of her mistress, so do our eyes look unto the Lord our God until he have mercy on us. Have mercy on us, O Lord, have mercy on us. [Ps. 123:1-3]); Offertory Justitiae Domini (The ordinances of the Lord are right, bringing joy to all hearts, sweeter than honey or the honeycomb. Therefore your servant will observe them. [Ps. 19:9-12]); Communion Passer invenit (The sparrow has found herself a home, and the turtle dove a nest in which to lay her young: at your altars, O Lord of hosts, my King and my God! Blessed are they who dwell in your house, they shall praise you for ever and ever. [Ps. 84:4,5]).
Offertory Motet: Ne reminiscaris, Domine – Orlandus Lassus, 1532-1594 (Remember not, O Lord, our offences, neither those of our parents, and take not revenge of our sins; spare, O Lord, spare thy people, whom thou hast redeemed by thy precious blood, lest thou be angry with us forever.)
Communion Motet: Miserere mei – Tomás Luis de Victoria, 1548-1611 (Have mercy upon me, O Lord, for I am weak; O Lord, heal me. [Ps. 6:2]).

Marriage Anniversaries. . . Bishop Lori will celebrate a Mass for couples observing their 15th—50th—plus wedding anniversaries this year on April 25th at 3:00 PM at St. Theresa Church, Trumbull. Please call St. John’s rectory [203-324-1553, ext 21] to register.

Saint Gabriel Parish. . . Will offer a lecture by Fr. James Turro, internationally renowned Scripture Scholar and professor at Seton Hall University, on Tuesday, March 9th at 7:30 pm. All are invited.

Mass Intentions+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, March 6
4:00 +John & Evelyn Sexton req. Hannah Young
Sunday, March 7
7:30 +Peter Medwed 4th Anniversary req. Munro & DeVivo Families
10:00 Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
12:00 +Helen Connor req. LAOH of Stamford
6:00 +Boccuzzi Valente req. Gina Uva
Monday, March 8
8:00 People of the Parish
12:10 +Daniel Fraher req. John Regan
Tuesday, March 9
8:00 Donald Samedi, Birthday req. Anne Marie Samedi
12:10 Special Intentions Marie Carr req. Marion & Phil Giordano
Wednesday, March 10
8:00 +Joseph McKenney req. Dr. & Mrs. Pat Santagata
12:10 Forgotten Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.
Thursday, March 11
8:00 +Lauren Boiteau req. Maude & Paul Hughes
12:10+Ida Anderson Birthday Remembrance req. Kate Longo
Friday, March 12
8:00 +Marie Summa req. Lisa Ingram
12:10 Special Intentions Joseph Kung req. Agnes Kung
Saturday, March 13
8:00 + Hope & Joseph McAleer req. The McAleer Family
12:10 Special Intentions Birgitta O’Brien-Costantino

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. Finished in time for 8 am Mass. Just walk in.

The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society . . .meets Saturdays in the Rectory, at 9:30 a.m. for coffee, conversation, Rosary, and a spiritual conference. All ladies of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

Moms & Tots . . . Moms and their kids meets each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30 a.m. Please join us.

Religious Education. . . Sundays at 8:30 a.m. Sunday Mass attendance is a duty for all students and Catholic parents.

Convert class [RCIA]. . .Tuesday Evenings 7:30 pm—8:30 pm in the rectory. Call Fr. Walsh, ext. 14.

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

St. Dominic Savio Society. . . . For the spiritual formation of young men from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert 203-324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, please contact Suzanna Bosthwick, 203-554-2004.

The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory.

The Legion of Mary. . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30pm in the rectory. All are welcome.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory All are welcome.

Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory.

Bible Study. . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory. Join us.

Coffee Hour. . . After the 10:00 a.m. Mass. All are welcome.

St. John’s in the advocate:
140 years ago, or so:
March 12, 1869: “The Roman Catholic Society have purchased a lot 200 X 100 feet, in one of the most prominent and valuable positions on Atlantic Street, from Mr. A. J. Bell, for $12,500. We understand it is the intention of the society to build a handsome church edifice on their new purchase.”

110 years ago, or so:
March 14, 1900: Bishop Tierney’s Appeal for Missions. “Bishop Tierney has sent out circulars to all the Catholic churches in the diocese making an appeal to the Catholics for funds for the maintenance of the Indian missions. The circular states that the need of funds this year is greater on account of the withdrawal of federal support from the Catholic mission schools. The reason for the withdrawal of financial aid by the government toward the Catholic missions is not understood among the Catholics and severe criticism has come from some quarters in consequence of the withdrawal of federal aid.”

65 years ago, or so:
March 3, 1955: Rev. Sean S. Reid, Dr. Crowley To Be Hibernian Guests. “The Rev. Sean S. Reid, pastor of the Carmelite Church, New York City, and Dr. Francis M. Crowley, dean of the Fordham University School of Education, will be guests of honor at the St. Patrick’s Day observance of the Ancient Order of Hibernians on Sunday. Members will assemble in Hibernian Hall at 7:40 Sunday morning and will march to St. John’s Church for the 8 o’clock Mass and Communion. Breakfast will be served at 9:15 in Hibernian Hall, Greyrock Pl. and Forest St.”

55 years ago, or so:
March 12, 1964: Scout Leaders Visit Bay State. “Boy leaders of Troop 22, Boy Scouts of America, sponsored by St. John’s Catholic Church, were guests of Explorer Post 109, sponsored by the Chelsea Council, Knights of Columbus, Chelsea, Mass., last weekend. During their stay at the “Y,” the boys were visited by John Slater, mayor of Chelsea, who talked to the boys stressing the value of seeing first-hand the places foremost in the history of the birth of the nation. He said America is a great country only because of the people who are thinkers and doers, and not followers. The following Boys Scouts and leaders participated: Scouts Mike Sledge, Daniel Shaub, Daniel Moriairty, Pat Moriairty, Thomas Lynam, Arthur Remy, William Boffa, Terry Costello, and Bob Johnson. Leaders Scoutmaster Edwin Iacovo Jr., assistants Kenneth Jones and Richard Nopper.”

The Interior Life-Fr. Terry Walsh

On Ash Wednesday, we heard the words, “Turn away from sin and be faithful to the Gospel.” The Holy Spirit beckons each of us to examine our lives in light of the Gospel and identify those areas of our lives that are inconsistent with the ‘Universal call to holiness’ – those things that slow us down in our journey to God. What are the obstacles that prevent us from being formed more perfectly into faithful reflections of our Lord? Interior penance helps us attain an honest assessment of our relationship with Christ. Conversion of the heart is not a simple matter of pledging not to commit a particular sin. Rather, it is an active search for the Truth and an ardent desire to adhere to the Truth. Jesus Christ is the Truth.

We discover Him in the Scriptures, in our faithful reception of the Sacraments (with proper preparation – prayer, confession, etc), and through our deepening faith evidenced by our love. There’s a sort of searching taking place, a search that necessarily begins with an act of humility, a plea for help, that is, “divine assistance.” Lord, heal me of (you fill in the blank) and fill me with your love (your grace, your mercy). A regular examination of conscience is indispensable for spiritual growth along the path that leads to the Heart of our Lord. The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches us that there’s a twofold process at work here. “This conversion of heart is accompanied by a salutary pain and sadness which the (Early Church) Fathers (also known as the Patristics, such as St. Augustine, St. Leo the Great, St. Gregory the Great, St. Athanasius, St. Jerome, and many others) called animi cruciatus – that is, affliction of spirit – and compunctio cordis – that is, repentance of heart.”

It takes courage to peer inside the heart. It takes still more effort to admit faults and failings and recognize a need for healing and forgiveness. In a way, it may seem ‘easier’ to avoid such an honest and thorough examination of the heart but in the last analysis, we would be denying ourselves of the graces necessary to enter into the life we’re called to share with Christ. Our Lord stands ready to supply all the graces necessary for our complete immersion into Him. He knocks on the door of our heart, constantly inviting us to allow Him to enter and “fix what’s broken’ – ‘purify what’s muddy’ – in short, to heal, to restore, and to strengthen us. He requires our faithful cooperation acting out of love for Him. He tells us in the Gospel of John, “If a man loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him…Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid”(Jn 14:23). Open up the Scriptures and drink in the Word. Allow Him to teach and inform your conscience and so discover the path he has laid out for you. It is truly the path of peace, the path of true freedom, the path of truth – and it is accomplished through His Cross.

St. Clement of Rome once said, “Let us fix our eyes on Christ’s blood and understand how precious it is to his Father, for, poured out for our salvation, it has brought to the whole world the grace of repentance.” ‘Turn away from sin and be faithful to the Gospel…..’

Bulletin for Sunday February 28, 2010

For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday February 28, 2010

Pastor ’s Corner. . . The Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter, this past February 22nd, was one of the most memorable among the many Monday evenings since our parish was established in 1847: even the weather cooperated! The ceremonies celebrating Pope Benedict XVI’s naming our parish church a Minor Basilica were beautiful and solemn, while also very touching: the 1,000-plus people of our parish, along with visiting guests, Bishops Lori, Losten and Chomnycky, priests and deacons from around the diocese, Lieutenant Governor Fedele, Mayor Pavia, Mary Savage who represented the Board of Representatives, and the members of the elected city boards of Stamford, the K of C, the AOH, Knights and Dames of Malta and Sepulcher, all bore witness to the beauty that our Basilica Parish.
Many, many parishioners worked very long hours devoting their talents and energy to make sure the evening was memorable: Dr. Joseph McAleer, one of our parish trustees, efficiently edited my lengthy manuscript last year, and designed the final form of the 367-page basilica petition; John Glover’s magnificent photographs enlivened the narrative and underscored the beauty of our church; Fathers Walsh and Audette graciously assisted by their suggestions and patience, as well as by their priestly fraternity and friendship; Scott Turkington, the parish choirmaster and organist had been preparing for the evening for months, and his scores of hours were reflected in the superbly beautiful polyphony and Gregorian Chant of the ceremonies; David Hughes offered splendid organ preludes, and the parish choir outdid themselves: I have never received so many phone calls and emails from city officials and non-parishioner visitors extolling and raving about the choir that evening!—the choir and Scott receive our heartfelt thanks for the absolutely magnificent music that evening; Phil DeFelice, whose craftsmanship created the graceful Papal Bell, the Tintinnabulum, used carved oaken pieces from the old confessional; Greg Duffey at Minuteman Press in Norwalk, designed the invitation, commemorative bookmark and ceremony program; Marion Morris, Betty Colarco and Diane Strain prepared the church and spent scores of hours arranging the 20-dozen roses on the altars; Tracy Banahan organized an elegant post-ceremony reception, the likes of which has not been seen before at Saint John’s: more than 500 people descended to the Monsignor Nagle Hall to enjoy the nearly 2,000 gourmet cookies these ladies of the parish baked for the evening of the inauguration; and I must mention them by name: Maureen Carpiniello, Judy DeFelice, Noreen Desoye, Carmela Faugno, Rosa Federici, Ann Federici, Angela Giannitti, Dorothy Keyes, Janet Lancaster, Landa Leute, Jennifer Marchetti, Lyn McIntyre, Janemarie Raiteri, Elizabth Spehar, Susan Spehar, Katie Sweet, Kathy Tafuro, Jennifer Whipple Marciano, along with the help of Angela, Jean Paul and Maria Marchetti. Alex Marchetti flew in from Rome to serve as Master of Ceremonies, along with Andrew Mbabaali and Leonard Logsdail, Jr., leading the parish altar servers through their intricate ceremonial paces—the best trained and disciplined crew in the diocese; our lector, Juanita Evans read beautifully, and the parish Holy Name men served as ushers; Jeff Russo gracefully bore the 20 foot tall, unwieldy-75 pound papal pavilion [Conopoeum] down the aisle without flinching or resting, and Phil DeFelice, Tom Banahan, Will Suarez and Tom Kolenberg bore the papal bell down the aisle with grace and pride: all assisted well. As usual, the parish support staff performed the essential behind-the-scenes preparatory duties during these past months, and so I thank Cindy Hulbert, Ferry Galbert, Millie Terenzio, Jeff Spetland, Anthony D’Ariano, Tony Colon, Gary Belmonte and Larry Bolanowski.
To all who attended the inauguration ceremonies, and to all who worked that evening, please accept my thanks, and my encouragement to return often to your Basilica of Saint John the Evangelist—with a friend! God bless you.—Mons. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick. . . Marjorie O’Kane, Connie Ward, Cheryl Carucci, Jerry Pellegrino, Joan Bachman, Irene Zelinsky, Nicholas Czekanski, Wilfred Baretto, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Mary Moriarty, Carmella Micik, Julie Grant, Lois Porter, Joseph Lasko, Billy Therriault, Wendy Woodin, Janet Rodgers, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans, Margaret Romaine.

Please pray for those who have recently died. . .Lawrence Schmidt Jr., Catherine B. Pullen, Wilhelmina-Belia Falek-Roerhost, Keith Segovia, Frank L. Infante, Dolores A. Deluca Freccia, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Roshah E. DeJean, Paul Reda, Katherine Dziezyc, John Castellano, Eugene Lops, Msgr. Lawrence McMahon, Rev. Al Russo, George “Bud” Ayers, William Wolf, Alfred Gautrau, David Lloyd, Evelyn Mahan, Joseph Logsdail, Peggy Pikul, Monsignor John Horgan Kung, Theodore Pikul, Rosemary Hynes Finn, George T. Murphy, William Morris, Jesus Cala, Liliane Joelle Tsemo, Elizabeth A. Coughlin, Hector Jance, Paul Rittman.

Confession. . . During Lent, St. John’s will offer Confession each Tuesday evening, from 7:30 -9:00 P.M. We also offer Confession daily, Monday through Friday and Sunday, 30 minutes before each Mass. Saturday Confessions are offered 3:00 –4:00 pm.

Stations of the Cross. . . Fridays during Lent: 4:00 p.m. English & 6:00 p.m. Creole

Mass On Line. . .Visit the parish website: www.stjohnsstamford.com, click the photo of the church up top, and you’ll see live all that’s going on in church, daily. (Note: Audio requires “ActiveX” “which is specifically designed to work with Windows systems (i.e. Internet Explorer). “ActiveX” by Microsoft is not supported on other operating systems such as Apple “Mac OS” or “GNU/Linux.”) 

Cardinal Kung. . . A Mass will offered on Saturday, March 6th at 12:10 pm marking the 10th anniversary of the death of Cardinal Kung, and for the persecuted Church in China.

Trinity Catholic Junior Class. . . will collect old cell phones to earn phone calling cards to be distributed to our troops abroad, so they can call home. Drop your old cell phones at the Trinity Catholic on Newfield Avenue. Your help is greatly appreciated!!!

Eastern Christian Studies. . .at St. Basil’s College, March 19-21; April 23-25. For more information: stbasilcollege.com. Join us for a study of early Eastern Catholic spirituality.

Job Seekers. . . Please join us Monday, March 1st at 7:30 pm in the rectory: help with resumes, job interviews and searches. All are welcome. For more info e-mail Melanie at melanie@redinc.biz

GRAND MARSHALL DINNER & PARADE: The Annual Parade Dinner will be held at the Ancient Order of Hibernians Hall on Greyrock Place, on Friday, March 6th at 7 pm. Monsignor DiGiovanni has been named the Grand Marshall of this year’s parade. If you’d like to attend the dinner, please contact: Tim McGuinness [203-327-1866; 646-728-3466; tmcguinness@icsc.org] The evening is great fun: a cocktail hour, superb food with wine and beer, a cash bar and Irish dancing and music. Please join us for Stamford’s Annual Saint Patrick’s Parade on Saturday, March 13th. The parade steps off at 12 noon from lower Summer Street, and proceeds around the center of town. Great marching bands, Irish dancers and bagpipers show off their talents in honor of Saint Patrick. Join us and be proud to be Irish—even if only for the day.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies resumes studies this Wednesday, March 3rd: We will read Lenten and Easter homilies of the Great Fathers. We meet in the rectory.

Sunday February 21, 2010 $ 11,993.00
Sunday February 22, 2009 $ 12,389.79

Ash Wednesday February 17, 2010 $ 2,661.00
Ash Wednesday February 25, 2009 $ 3,260.00

“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

February 28th Sunday Readings: Ex 3:1-8a, 13-15; 1 Cor 10:1-6, 10-12; Lk 13:1-9.

Hymns for this weekend . . . (1) 50 (2) 113.

Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass Mass Ordinary: Missa de feria – Orlando di Lasso, 1532-1594.
All are encouraged to sing the Creed at the Noon Mass, which may be found in the hymnal at No. 289.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Tibi dixit cor meum (My heart declared to you: “Your countenance have I sought; I shall ever seek your countenance, O Lord; do not turn your face from me.” The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? [Ps. 27:8,9,1]) Tract Commovisti (You have caused the earth to quake, O Lord, you have rent it open. Repair its breaches, for it totters. May your chosen ones escape the menacing bow and be delivered. [Psalm 60:4,6]); Gospel Acclamation Miserere mei Deus – (Ps. 50, Graduale Romanum); Offertory Meditabor (I will meditate on your commandments which I love exceedingly; I will lift up my hands towards your commandments which I love. [Psalm 119:47,48]); Communion Visionem quam vidistis (Tell no one about the vision you have seen until the Son of Man has risen from the dead. [Matthew 17:9]).
Offertory Motet: Nolo mortem peccatoris – Thomas Morley, c. 1557 – 1602 [Nolo mortem peccatoris; Haec sunt verba Salvatoris. Father, I am thine only Son, sent down from heav’n mankind to save. Father, all things fullfilled and done according to thy will I have. Father, my will now all is this: Nolo mortem peccatoris. Father, behold my painful smart, taken for man on ev’ry side; ev’n from my birth to death most tart, no kind of pain I have denied, but suffered all, and all for this: Nolo mortem peccatoris. (Text anonymous)].
Communion Motet: Miserere mei – Tomás Luis de Victoria, 1548-1611 (Have mercy upon me, O Lord, for I am weak; O Lord, heal me. [Ps. 6:2]).

Singers are needed for the 10:00 a.m. Family Mass! . . . Our volunteer choir raises hearts and voices in praise of God for the 10:00 AM Family Mass each Sunday. The choir rehearses at 8:15 AM on Sundays only, in the Choir Room. Would you consider lending your voice to our choir? Please call Scott Turkington for more information: 324-1553, ext. 18 or email at STurkington@optonline.net.

A NIGHT AT THE OPERA. . . Please join us Saturday May 1st at 7:00 pm in the church for a Live in Performance featuring the Stars of the Metropolitan Opera. Proceeds will benefit the ongoing restoration of our historic church. For ticket and sponsorship information please call 203-324-1553, ext.21. All are welcome.

THE SHROUD of TURIN Mr. Donald H Nohs will return to St. John’s on Saturday, March 27th, the Vigil of Palm Sunday, at 7 pm to offer once again a special presentation on the Shroud of Turin. Full-sized photographic replicas of the Shroud will be displayed, as well as authentic full-sized replicas of the Crown of Thorns, the Nails, and the Spear that pierced Our Lord’s side. The Presentation will take place in the Church. All are welcome: no charge.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, February 27
4:00 +John & Evelyn Sexton req. Hannah Young
Sunday, February 28
7:30 Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C
10:00 +Mary Daly req. LAOH
12:00 +Anna Young req. Joseph & Agnes Kung
6:00 Sam & Family req. Francis Baranowski
Monday, March 1
8:00 Souls in Purgatory
12:10 Special Intentions Kim, Camryn & Maddie O’Han req. Maude & Paul Hughes
Tuesday, March 2
8:00 Special Intentions Timothy Boiteau req. Maude & Paul Hughes
12:10 Elissa & Joe Metz req. Jeannene & Ryan McMurchy
Wednesday, March 3
8:00 +Margaret M. Timon req. Thomas A. Timon
12:10 +Maxine Dombrowski 1st Anniversary req. Joe McAleer
Thursday, March 4
8:00 Special Intentions Sister Ellen Mary CSJ, Birthday req. Marie Carr
12:10 +Vincent Marrane req. Larry Bolanowski
Friday, March 5
8:00 +Sister Jeanette Fanfan & Sister Mariette Boulle req. Montanise Paulemon
12:10 Special Intentions Vera Viola
Saturday, March 6
8:00 Forgotten Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.
12:10 +His Eminence Ignatius Cardinal Kung, 10th Anniversary req. Cardinal Kung Foundation

Holy Name Society . . . meets Fridays in the Rectory, 7-7:50 a.m. for coffee, Eucharistic adoration & Benediction. All men of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society . . .meets Saturdays in the Rectory, at 9:30 a.m. for coffee, conversation, Rosary, and a spiritual conference. All ladies of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

Moms & Tots . . . Moms and their kids meets each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30 a.m. Please join us.

Religious Education. . . Sundays at 8:30 a.m. Sunday Mass attendance is a duty for all students and Catholic parents.

Convert class [RCIA]. . .Tuesday Evenings 7:30 pm—8:30 pm in the rectory. Call Fr. Walsh, ext. 14.

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

St. Dominic Savio Society. . . Will Meet today in the rectory after the 12 p.m. Mass. For the spiritual formation of young men from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert 203-324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, please contact Suzanna Borthwick, 203-554-2004.

Introduction to Ecclesiastical Latin . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6pm in the rectory.

The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory.

The Legion of Mary. . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30pm in the rectory. All are welcome.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory All are welcome.

Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory.

Bible Study. . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory. Join us

Coffee Hour. . . After the 10:00 a.m. Mass. All are welcome.

St. John’s in the advocate:
100 years ago, or so:
March 1, 1894: “The fiftieth anniversary of the establishment of the Hartford diocese of the Roman Catholic Church occurs March 17 of this year. It was on that date in 1844—50 years age—that Bishop William Tyler was consecrated. He was bishop until his death, which occurred June 18, 1849.” (EDITOR’S NOTE: Stamford was part of the Diocese of Hartford until the Bridgeport Diocese was created in 1953.)

March 1, 1899: Father McClean’s Able Sermon. “Rev. Peter H. McClean of St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Hartford, preached in St. John’s R.C. Church last night. He took for his text a portion of the Apostles’ Creed, and from it drew a wholesome lesson of the life a good Christian should live. In a clear, concise way, he told of the passion and death of Christ, and then of his resurrection. There was a very large congregation present, and all gave Father McClean the closest attention.” (EDITOR’S NOTE: The Reverend Peter McClean was a vocation from St. John’s Parish.)

55 years ago, or so:
March 3, 1955: Church Services To Open Girl Scout Week In Area. “Sunday, March 6, is Girl Scout Sunday and marks the beginning of Girl Scout Week throughout the United States. Each Brownie, Tweenie and Girl Scout will attend her own church on that day, and where arrangements have been made the girls will sit together. Here is a list of churches where arrangements have been made: St. John’s Catholic Church: 8:00—Mass and Holy Communion for girls. Mrs. Vincent Plomitello will lead the Girl Scouts. Mrs. Norman Raymond will lead the Brownies.”

March 4, 1957: Bob Gross Stars As Johnnies Win CYO Championship. “The St. John’s basketball five fought steadily to overcome an early deficit and defeat the St. Mary’s team to win the 16-year old title in the CYO playoffs to determine an entry in the Diocesan championships. Bob Gross’ basket with 30 seconds remaining in the game clinched the title for the Johnnies. St. Mary’s, with Casey and Mazza excelling under the boards, gained a 15-12 halftime lead. Both rebounders fouled out late in the game and the Johnnies surged into the driver’s seat with a minute remaining. Gross, who had sunk eight consecutive points in the third quarter to pull the St. John’s out front by a 24-23 score at the end of the period, connected with the decisive two-pointer. He had 18 points in the game.”

Looking Toward Holy Saturday
– Fr. Terry Walsh

The following text is taken from an ancient homily on Holy Saturday , the author is unknown. It is a magnificent meditation on the “40 Hours” our Lord lay in the Tomb and a wonderful source of contemplation as we approach the Passion and Death of our Lord, and await His Resurrection……
“Something strange is happening – there is a great silence on earth today, a silence and stillness. The whole earth keeps silence because the King is asleep. The earth trembled and is still because God has fallen asleep in the flesh and he has raised up all who have slept ever since the world began. God has died in the flesh and he has raised up all who have slept ever since the world began. God has died in the flesh and hell trembles with fear.
He has gone to search for our first parent, as for a lost sheep. Greatly desiring to visit those who live in darkness and in the shadow of death, he has gone to free from sorrow the captives Adam and Eve, he who is both God and the son of Eve. The Lord approached them bearing the Cross, the weapon that had won him the victory. At the sight of him Adam, the first man he had created, struck his breast in terror and cried out to everyone: ‘My Lord be with you all.’ Christ answered him: ‘And with your spirit.’ He took him by the hand and raised him up saying: ‘Awake, O sleeper, and rise from the dead, and Christ will give you light.’
I am your God, who for your sake have become your son. Out of love for you and for your descendants I now by my own authority command all who are held in bondage to come forth, all who are in darkness to be enlightened, all who are sleeping to arise. I order you, o sleeper, to awake. I did not create you to be held a prisoner in hell. Rise from the dead, for I am the life of the dead. Rise up, work of my hands, you who were created in my image. Rise, let us leave this place, for you are in me and I am in you; together we form only one person and we cannot be separated.
For your sake I, your God, became your son; I, the Lord, took the form of a slave; I, whose home is above the heavens, descended to the earth and beneath the earth. For your sake, for the sake of man, I became like a man without help, free among the dead. For the sake of you, who left a garden, I was betrayed to the Jews in a garden, and I was crucified in a garden.
See on my face the spittle I received in order to restore to you the life I once breathed into you. See there the marks of the blows I received in order to refashion your warped nature in my image. On my back see the marks of the scourging I endured to remove the burden of sin that weighs upon your back. See my hands, nailed firmly to a tree, for you who once wickedly stretched out your hand to a tree.
I slept on the cross and a sword pierced my side for you who slept in paradise and brought forth Eve from your side. My side has healed the pain in yours. My sleep will rouse you from your sleep in hell. The sword that pierced me has sheathed the sword that was turned against you.
Rise, let us leave this place. The enemy led you out of the earthly paradise. I will not restore you to that paradise, but I will enthrone you in heaven. I forbade you the tree that was only a symbol of life, but see, I who am life itself am now one with you. I appointed cherubim to guard you as slaves are guarded, but now I make them worship you as God. The throne formed by cherubim awaits you, its bearers swift and eager. The bridal chamber is adorned, the banquet is ready, the eternal dwelling places are prepared, the treasure houses of all good things lie open. The kingdom of heaven has been prepared for you from all eternity.”

Jesus took Peter, James, and John up the Mountain so that they would witness the Transfiguration and be edified by His Glory and His Sacrifice in the wake of the Crucifixion. After His 40 hours in the Tomb , the whole world was transfigured: the Gates of Heaven were opened and the hearts of mankind were able to receive the Gift of Divine life and so be “transfigured” – molded into the likeness of Christ Himself – if we seek Him and follow.

Bulletin for Sunday February 21, 2010

For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday February 21, 2010

Pastor ’s Corner. . . “Simon , son of John. . . You are Peter and on this Rock I will build my Church, and the gates of Hell will not prevail against it. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven” [Mt 13:16-19]
When Our Lord spoke these words to Simon, son of John in the presence of the other Apostles, He did not single out a particular friend, or grant to this fisherman a mere personal concession of authority. Jesus would never have chosen Peter: He first observed wonder that Simon, of all the Twelve, was the only one who answered His question correctly: “Who do you say I am?” Not being the brightest of the Apostolic lot, his answer pointed out to Our Lord that the Heavenly Father had chosen Simon, and provided him with the answer, in order to clarify to Jesus who it was who should head up the Church. Next, Our Lord changed Simon’s name: whenever God changed the name of anyone in the Old Testament, as He did with Abram to Abraham, it meant that God was changing the very reason for that person’s existence. Abram became Abraham in order to be the Father of the Chosen People whose “descendants would be more numerous than the stars” [Gen??] He changes Simon’s name to Peter, since Peter would bring that promise to fulfillment through the Church—the New Israel. Why did Jesus choose the name “Peter”? Why not George or Reginald? Because Peter means Rock in Aramaic, the language spoken and in which the Gospel of Matthew was written: the word for rock is Kephas, or Cephas in the English transliteration, which is repeated in the Gospels and the Epistles of St. Paul [ 4 times in Galatians; 4 times in I Corinthians]. In English, this play on words doesn’t work: Peter doesn’t look anything like Rock; the closest in a modern language is the French word Pierre—both for Peter and Rock.
Our Lord next told Simon that “You are Peter [Rock], and on this Rock I will build my Church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.” The Church isn’t built on an idea, or a social movement or ideology: it was established by the Divine Person of Our Lord, obedient to another Divine Person, the Eternal Father, and enlivened by the Third Divine Person, the Holy Spirit, guiding the Church to teach only the truth so that “the gates of hell will not prevail against it.” And, the Church’s visible head is another person: Peter. But that dignity was not merely a personal gift to that one man. Jesus was establishing a permanent Church, which would last until the end of the world, and reach to the ends of the world, offering truth, grace and salvation to everyone. The symbol of that authority ?—the Keys of Heaven: Jesus just about quotes Isaiah 22:22, which is about the king giving authority in the form of keys of the palace to the chief steward. That chief steward was given the keys of authority only for a while, and then they were passed to his successor. So too with Peter and the Church. Jesus does not make Peter the absolute Head of the Church: that is Jesus. But the visible head of the Church is Peter, and his successors, the Bishops of Rome, where Peter taught and died a martyr, with Saint Paul.
Our Lord knew that Peter was imperfect; He would scold Peter soon after, when Peter objected that Jesus shouldn’t suffer and die. Likewise, Peter would deny Christ three times on the evening of His arrest; abandoning Him the day He died on the Cross. Yet, Our Lord did not withdraw His grant of authority from this weak and flawed Rock. After the Resurrection, Jesus asked three times, “Do you love me?” —offering Peter three opportunities to redress his triple denial of Jesus. Peter‘s triple reply, “Yes Lord, you know I love you” [Jn 21:15-19]. Peter grew into his new job: he had to understand that the only way to exercise authority in the Church was first to be so in love with Jesus that he wanted to imitate Him entirely, even to the point of martyrdom. Faith must lead to love of God, and we can all get there.—Mons. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick. . . Jerry Pellegrino, Joan Bachman, Irene Zelinsky, Nicholas Czekanski, Wilfred Baretto, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Mary Moriarty, Carmella Micik, Julie Grant, Lois Porter, Joseph Lasko, Billy Therriault, Wendy Woodin, Janet Rodgers, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans, Margaret Romaine.

Please pray for those who have recently died. . .Kay Pullen, Wilhelmina-Belia Falek-Roerhost, Keith Segovia, Frank L. Infante, Dolores A. Deluca Freccia, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Roshah E. DeJean, Paul Reda, Katherine Dziezyc, John Castellano, Eugene Lops, Msgr. Lawrence McMahon, Rev. Al Russo, George “Bud” Ayers, William Wolf, Alfred Gautrau, David Lloyd, Evelyn Mahan, Joseph Logsdail, Peggy Pikul, Monsignor John Horgan Kung, Theodore Pikul, Rosemary Hynes Finn, George T. Murphy, William Morris, Jesus Cala, Liliane Joelle Tsemo, Elizabeth A. Coughlin, Hector Jance, Paul Rittman.

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

Lenten Fast and Abstinence . . . On all Fridays during Lent, all Catholics age 14 and older are obliged to abstain from eating meat, and all Catholics in good health between the ages of 18 and 60 are also obliged to fast. Abstinence means not eating meat or meat products; fasting means having one full meal and two light meals during the day, with no snacks between meals. Drinking water or taking medicine or vitamins does not break a fast. All Fridays during Lent are days of abstinence from eating meat. Good Friday is a day of both abstinence and fasting.

Confession. . . During Lent, St. John’s will offer Confession each Tuesday evening, from 7:30 -9:00 P.M. We also offer Confession daily, Monday through Friday and Sunday, 30 minutes before each Mass. Saturday Confessions are offered 3:00 –4:00 pm.

Stations of the Cross. . . Fridays during Lent: 4:00 p.m. English & 6:00 p.m. Creole

Mass On Line. . .Visit the parish website: www.stjohnsstamford.com, click the photo of the church up top, and you’ll see live all that’s going on in church, daily. (Note: Audio requires “ActiveX” “which is specifically designed to work with Windows systems (i.e. Internet Explorer). “ActiveX” by Microsoft is not supported on other operating systems such as Apple “Mac OS” or “GNU/Linux.”) 

Basilica Inauguration. . . Bishop Lori will formally inaugurate the Basilica of Saint John the Evangelist on Monday February 22nd at 7pm with Solemn Evening Prayer and Benediction celebrating the Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter. All are invited.

Cardinal Kung. . . A Mass will offered on Saturday, March 6th at 12:10 pm marking the 10th anniversary of the death of Cardinal Kung, and for the persecuted Church in China.

Trinity Catholic Junior Class. . . will collect old cell phones to earn phone calling cards to be distributed to our troops abroad, so they can call home. Drop your old cell phones at the Trinity Catholic on Newfield Avenue. Your help is greatly appreciated!!!

Eastern Christian Studies. . .at St. Basil’s College, March 19-21; April 23-25. For more information: stbasilcollege.com. Join us for a study of early Eastern Catholic spirituality.

Votive lamps. . . are signs of devotion: the large sanctuary lamp is required, signifying Our Lord’s presence in the Blessed Sacrament. The one above St. Joseph’s Altar is required since the Relic of the True Cross is exposed for view; also because the relics of the Saints are there. The one above Our Lady’s Altar simply designates our devotion to Her and to Her Blessed Son.

Job Seekers. . . Please join us Monday, March 1st at 7:30 pm in the rectory: help with resumes, job interviews and searches. All welcome. For more info e-mail Melanie at melanie@redinc.biz

Sunday February 14, 2010 $ 10,932.00
Sunday February 15, 2009 $ 9,873.41

“I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

February 28th Sunday Readings: Gn 15:5-12, 17-18; Phil 3:17–4:1 or 3:20–4:1; Lk 9:28b-36

From Scott Turkington . . . It is with sadness that I must announce my departure from the wonderful Basilica of St. John the Evangelist. It is the grace of my life that I’m called to work in this field that unites the most beautiful things of all, liturgy and music, and toward the highest calling of divine worship. And it has been a special blessing and happy experience for me to do so at St. John’s as its Organist & Choirmaster for the last eleven years. With the guidance and support of Msgr. DiGiovanni and all the parishioners of St. John’s, we have been able to do so many wonderful things. Following Easter Sunday, I will take up my new post at the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Charleston, South Carolina, as its Director of Music. I will miss all of you terribly and I ask for your prayers in my new work. I thank you all deeply for the tremendous work so many of you have done to make the new Basilica a place of beautiful liturgy and music. Deo gratias!

Hymns for this weekend . . . (1) 54 (2) 50.

Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass
Mass Ordinary: Kyrie XVII – Graduale Romanum; Sanctus, Benedictus & Agnus Dei from Mass for Three Voices – William Byrd, 1540-1623.
All are encouraged to sing the Creed at the Noon Mass, which may be found in the hymnal at No. 289.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Invocabit me (When he calls to me, I will answer him; I will rescue him and honour him; with long life will I satisfy him. He who abides in the shelter of the Most High, shall remain under the protection of the God of Heaven. [Ps. 91:15,16,1]); Gospel Acclamation Miserere mei Deus – (Ps. 50, Graduale Romanum); Offertory Scapulis suis (The Lord will overshadow you with his pinions, and you will find refuge under his wings. His faithfulness will encompass you with a shield. [Psalm 91:4-5]); Communion Scapulis suis (The Lord will overshadow you with his pinions, and you will find refuge under his wings. His faithfulness will encompass you with a shield. [Psalm 91:4-5]).
Offertory Motet: Tu pauperum refugium – Josquin des Prez, c. 1450/55-1521 (Thou hast been the refuge of the poor, of the mourning and sorrowing, Thou comforter, giving courage to the laborer, helper of erring men, Source of truth and life. And now, Redeemer Lord, I take refuge in Thee alone, Thou very God do I adore. Thou art my hope, my Salvation, Christ Jesus. Be Thou my help, for without Thy watchful care, while sleeping, death would claim my soul.).
Communion Motet: Adoramus te, Christe – Orlandus Lassus, 1532-1594
(We adore Thee, O Christ, and we bless Thee, because by Thy Holy Cross, Thou hast redeemed the World. Lord, have mercy upon us. [Antiphon at feasts of the Holy Cross]).

Singers are needed for the 10:00 a.m. Family Mass! . . . Our volunteer choir raises hearts and voices in praise of God for the 10:00 AM Family Mass each Sunday. The choir rehearses at 8:15 AM on Sundays only, in the Choir Room. Would you consider lending your voice to our choir? Please call Scott Turkington for more information: 324-1553, ext. 18 or email at STurkington@optonline.net.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, February 20
4:00 +Vincenzo & Michela Zabatta req. Daughter Theresa
Sunday, February 21
7:30 Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
10:00 +For the deceased Members of the Paulemon & Millien Family
12:00 Special Intention Margaret Perri req. The Marchetti Family
6:00 Thanksgiving for my Family & Survived Victims of Haiti’s earthquake
Monday, February 22
8:00 +Rose Giordano req. Franco & Nancy DiDemetrio
12:10 In Honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary req. Fabiola C.
Tuesday, February 23
8:00 +Don Donahue req. Lisa Fabrizo
12:10 Special Intention Kristy & Kennedy Synder req. Jeannene & Ryan McMurchy
Wednesday, February 24
8:00 +Marge Price req. Lisa Fabrizo
12:10 +Rosario D’Amico req. His Brother Frank
Thursday, February 25
8:00 +James Conard Miller req. Sandra Bolanowski
12:10 Forgotten Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry Galbert
Friday, February 26
8:00 +Michael A. Rubino, Sr. req. Lori & James Rubino
12:10 +Alexander Munro Family req. Louise Munro
Saturday, February 27
8:00 +Leonard Truscello, Jr. req. Sharon Gannon
12:10 Special Intention Pinedo & Ucero Families

Holy Name Society . . . meets Fridays in the Rectory, 7-7:50 a.m. for coffee, Eucharistic adoration & Benediction. All men of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society . . .meets Saturdays in the Rectory, at 9:30 a.m. for coffee, conversation, Rosary, and a spiritual conference. All ladies of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

Moms & Tots . . . Moms and their kids meets each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30 a.m. Please join us.

Religious Education. . . Sundays at 8:30 a.m. Sunday Mass attendance is a duty for all students and Catholic parents.

Convert class [RCIA]. . .Tuesday Evenings 7:30 pm—8:30 pm in the rectory. Call Fr. Walsh, ext. 14.

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

St. Dominic Savio Society. . . Will Meet on February 28 after the 12 p.m. Mass in the rectory. For the spiritual formation of young men from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert 203-324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, please contact Suzanna Borthwick, 203-554-2004.

Introduction to Ecclesiastical Latin . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6pm in the rectory.

The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory.

The Legion of Mary. . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30pm in the rectory. All are welcome.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory All are welcome.

Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory.

Bible Study. . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory. Join us

Coffee Hour. . . After the 10:00 a.m. Mass. All are welcome.

St. John’s in the advocate:
130 years ago, or so:
February 22, 1878: “The successor of Pope Pius IX was elected on Wednesday by the method known as “by adoration.” His name was Cardinal Gioacchnio Pecci, who has assumed the title of Leo XIII. The election of Cardinal Pecci is sure to give great satisfaction throughout the Catholic world. A requiem mass was said in St. John’s Roman Catholic church, Stamford, Monday, for the repose of the soul of Pius IX in obedience to the request of Bishop Thomas Galberry of Hartford.”

60 years ago, or so:
February 24, 1948: Clergymen Laud Brotherhood Ideal At War Dead Rites. “Stamford citizens, officials, clergymen and members of the various veterans groups marked the opening of American Brotherhood Week yesterday by honoring three of Stamford’s war dead, representing the Catholic, Jewish and Protestant faiths, at ceremonies at the Stamford Theatre. “The memorial service for these three men helps us remember that these and other heroes died for ideals of brotherhood and peace,” Mayor Charles E. Moore said. The Rev. Nicholas P. Coleman of St. John’s Catholic Church stated that there is no greater love than that of men who have died for friends or for their country.”

55 years ago, or so:
February 24, 1955: Work To Start At St. Joseph’s. “Construction of the new 85-bed wing for St. Joseph’s Hospital is scheduled to begin late in April, according to the report given Wednesday by the architect, Francis L. S. Mayers, at a special meeting of the hospital’s executive committee at the hospital. Present at the meeting was the Most Rev. Lawrence J. Shehan, Bishop of Bridgeport. The Rt. Rev. John J. Hayes, committee chairman, presided. Also in attendance at the meeting was the Rt. Rev. Nicholas P. Coleman.”

20 years ago, or so:
February 23 1989: 18 names, 18 stories, 18 lives, cut short. “”Downtowners” they are called. Passers-by might see them and think “a drifter, a bag lady, the pigeon lady.” They are part of the hopeless, hapless, nameless homeless. Yesterday at St. John’s Catholic Church on Atlantic Street, where many gather for peace of mind, spiritual strength or to escape the cold, a memorial Mass was celebrated for the homeless or former homeless who have died in the past two years. Leading the congregation in prayer, the Rev. William Nagle said that marking the end of a life is a celebration of a new beginning.”

The Fourth Station
Jesus is met by His Blessed Mother
“And a Sword shall pass through your Heart”

-Fr Terry Walsh
Many who have had near death experiences seem to speak of a similar occurrence – that there whole life passed before their eyes in an instant. Could this be what the moment of Judgment might be like? Images of the Vision of Isaiah come to mind (Is.6). We will, at some moment, find ourselves in the same position as Isaiah did. Each of us will stand before the Throne of God and we’ll be in the Presence of Perfect Holiness, perfect beauty, purity, and truth. We’ll be in the Presence of Love Himself; that is, with the One who emptied Himself of His glory in order to become Incarnate in the Spotless Womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary; the One born into the world He created in order to offer Himself to the Father in reparation for our sins. Long before He was sentenced by Pilate, Jesus knew what sort of death He would endure. He knew. And so did His Blessed Mother, who consented to His sacrifice with incomparable sorrow and with perfect love. Theirs is the most unique of relationships. Mary is so intimately woven in the life of Her Son: She shares in His Glory, She shares in His pain. De Montfort wrote, “The Most High God came down to us in a perfect way through the humble Virgin Mary, without losing anything of His divinity or holiness. It is likewise through Mary that we poor creatures must ascend to almighty God in a perfect manner without having anything to fear”(157). How well do we honor Her? How well do we pray for Her Motherly Hands of love to guide us along the path that ends in the Heart of Jesus? What heartache She endured to know the rejection Her loving Son would bear: “He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows…(Is. 53:3)” He carried our sorrows, indeed, He fell under their weight – 3 times. “Yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; upon Him was the chastisement that made us whole, and with His stripes we are healed….He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is dumb, so he opened not his mouth”(Is. 53:4). The Son of Mary alone is Holy. Our only entrance into Holiness – into Eternal Beatitude – is through Him. “I am the Living Bread which came down from heaven; if anyone eats this Bread, he will live for ever; and the Bread which I shall give for the life of the world is my flesh”(Jn 6:51). Through His Passion He demonstrated the depth of His love – the spilling of His Precious Blood became ‘the wellspring to all life, all holiness’ and the only means by which our sins may be taken away and our souls made pure. Sacramental Confession affords us the opportunity to “review the reel” of our life and to seek forgiveness for our transgressions before we stand before the Throne of God. We are healed through the Blood of the One who gave Himself up for us. He alone makes us worthy to enter the Perfection of Heaven.
Now is the time of mercy. Mercy is the reason for his dwelling among us, for his suffering, his death, and ultimately his Resurrection. “He poured out His soul to death, and was numbered with the transgressors; yet He bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors”(Is. 53:12). Mary shared in that suffering, spiritually, and poured out Her love as only She could, at that sorrowful meeting on the Way to Calvary. St. Josemaria Escriva reflected, “Jesus had been waiting for this meeting with His Mother. How many childhood memories! Bethlehem, the flight into Egypt, the village of Nazareth. Now again he wants her by His side, on Calvary…Our Lord and His Mother will not abandon us and whenever it is necessary, they will make their presence felt to fill the hearts of their loved ones with security and peace.” As you reflect on your relationship with Jesus and Mary, what images come to mind? What life experiences represent your ‘Bethlehem’ or your ‘flight into Egypt’? In your journey, have you called out to Jesus and Mary through thoughtful reflection on the Mysteries of our Lord’s life, especially through the Scriptures and the Rosary? Have you willingly picked up the Cross and so received the consolation of our Mother’s love and encouragement. She is there, at the 4th Station, waiting for you.

Bulletin for Sunday February 14, 2010

For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:Bulletin for Sunday February 14, 2010

Pastor ’s Corner. . . Lent begins this Wednesday—Ash Wednesday. Lent is much more than a time of increased piety or resolutions designed to break bad habits: Lent is the Church’s annual season of struggle against Satan. By “The Church”, I don’t simply mean the Universal Church, but, I mean you and I, who make up that Universal Church; and the struggle against Satan is our personal and daily one. That struggle began over 2,000 years ago when the eternal Son of God, creator of the universe, took on human flesh of the Virgin Mary and was born in Bethlehem. The Creator became a creature to free the only creature made in His image and likeness-US-from the power of Satan and from the sway of his most potent weapon, death. As one of the prayers for Christmas Mass reads: “Hasten, Lord our God, do not delay, and free us by Your power from the devil’s fury.” What is “the devil’s fury”? Moviegoers might imagine a scene from The Exorcist, or some other cinematographic nonsense. The reality is otherwise: the Devil’s fury is subtler and more boringly mundane than anything Hollywood might imagine: the Devil’s fury is daily temptation, which Satan ratchets up as we seek to practice virtue. By falling into sin, Satan wins, and his hatred of God bears fruit in our eternal damnation. Why should he bother expending so much time and energy as Hollywood suggests in demonic possession, when the Devil can control us by simply tempting us?
Lent is the Church’s great annual spiritual exercise with its focal point on the mystery of Christ’s redemptive mercy: foretold in the Old Testament, realized in the earthly life of Jesus, especially in His Passion, death, resurrection and ascension; and which is realized in us by our worthy and frequent reception of the sacraments, especially Confession and Holy Communion, and then in prayer, fasting, acts of mercy, spiritual reading, and a more intense practice of the Christian virtues in our daily lives. In other words, we open ourselves more readily to Christ’s transforming grace by living a more intense Christian life. According to Saint Peter Chrysologus, “Three things sustain faith, devotion, and virtue,”. . . “prayer, fasting, and mercy to others. Prayer knocks at God’s door, fasting wins us what we need, and mercy is the hand cupped to receive . . . Let him who prays also fast; let him who fasts have pity on others; let him who wishes to be heard hear those who ask his help, for such a person alone has God’s ear whose own ear is not closed to the needs of others.” [Sermon 43]
How to begin? Don’t make crazy resolutions that you’ll never keep. Decide to set sin aside, instead, and to open your heart to doing God’s will as the most important guide for all you do in your daily life. First: go to Confession and use this first week of Lent to meditate on the Passion of Christ: look at His sufferings for what they are—Jesus suffering to save you from Satan and eternal death. “There is no greater stimulus to love our enemies [in which fraternal charity finds its perfect form] than the contemplation of the marvelous patience of Him who . . . offered His face to be spat upon and endured the other torments of His Passion . . . Did anyone hear those sweet and loving words of Christ from the Cross: ‘Father forgive them. . ?” Blessed Abbot Aelred continues, “If you are to love yourself correctly, you must not yield to carnal pleasure, by which is meant self-centeredness. If you do not to yield to carnal pleasure, center your affections on the loving person of the Lord.” [The Mirror of Charity, 3]. Start your first week of Lent by reading and meditating on the Passion narratives in the four Gospels. Read some each day, and think about them, and pray for a few minutes daily in gratitude to God for thinking so highly of you, personally, that He sent Christ to die for you. Express that gratitude in acts of charity, fasting, prayer and penance. —Mons. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick… Irene Zelinsky, Nicholas Czekanski, Wilfred Baretto, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Mary Moriarty, Carmella Micik, Julie Grant, Lois Porter, Joseph Lasko, Billy Therriault, Wendy Woodin, Janet Rodgers, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans, Margaret Romaine.

Please pray for those who have recently died…Kay Pullen, Wilhelmina-Belia Falek-Roerhost, Keith Segovia, Frank L. Infante, Dolores A. Deluca Freccia, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Roshah E. DeJean, Paul Reda, Katherine Dziezyc, John Castellano, Eugene Lops, Msgr. Lawrence McMahon, Rev. Al Russo, George “Bud” Ayers, William Wolf, Alfred Gautrau, David Lloyd, Evelyn Mahan, Joseph Logsdail, Peggy Pikul, Monsignor John Horgan Kung, Theodore Pikul, Rosemary Hynes Finn, George T. Murphy, William Morris, Jesus Cala, Liliane Joelle Tsemo, Elizabeth A. Coughlin, Hector Jance, Paul Rittman.

Special Energy Collection . . . The second collection today will be the Special Energy Collection to help pay the Higher Energy and Fuel Costs for the parish. Your generosity is appreciated.

ASH WEDNESDAY: is February 17th: It is NOT a holy day of obligation. Ashes will be distributed during the 8:00 a.m. and 12:10 p.m. Masses, as well as during the day at the rectory office until 7:30 p.m.

LENTEN FAST AND ABSTINENCE . . .On Ash Wednesday and Good Friday, and all Fridays during Lent, all Catholics age 14 and older are obliged to abstain from eating meat, and all Catholics in good health between the ages of 18 and 60 are also obliged to fast. Abstinence means not eating meat or meat products; fasting means having one full meal and two light meals during the day, with no snacks between meals. Drinking water or taking medicine or vitamins does not break a fast. All Fridays during Lent are days of abstinence from eating meat. Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are days of both abstinence and fasting.

CONFESSION. . . During Lent, every Catholic Church throughout Fairfield County will remain open each Tuesday evening, from 7:30 -9:00 P.M. for confessions, including. St. John’s. This parish offers Confession daily, Monday through Friday and Sunday, 30 minutes before each Mass. Saturday Confessions are offered 3:00 –4:00 pm.

STATIONS OF THE CROSS : Fridays during Lent: 4:00 p.m. English & 6:00 p.m. Creole

Mass On Line. . . Visit the parish website: www.stjohnsstamford.com, click the photo of the church up top, and you’ll see live all that’s going on in church, daily. ALSO, a light now burns all night in church, illuminating the tabernacle, so you can make a home visit to the Blessed Sacrament. (Note: Audio requires “ActiveX” “which is specifically designed to work with Windows systems (ie.Internet Explorer). “ActiveX” by Microsoft is not supported on other operating systems such as Apple Mac OS or GNU/Linux.”) 

Basilica Inauguration. . . Bishop Lori will formally inaugurate the Basilica of Saint John the Evangelist on Monday February 22nd at 7 pm with Solemn Evening Prayer and Benediction celebrating the Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter. All are invited.

Trinity Catholic Junior Class: will collect old cell phones that are not being used anymore. For each phone they collect they will earn a phone calling card to be distributed to our men and women stationed overseas so our troops can call home. Your old cell phones may be dropped off at the Main Office at Trinity Catholic on Newfield Avenue. Your help is greatly appreciated!!!

Sunday February 7, 2010 $ 12,294.00

Sunday February 8, 2009 $ 11,161.08 “I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

February 21st Sunday Readings: Dt 26:4-10; Rom 10:8-13; Lk 4:1-13

Hymns for this weekend . . . (1) 118 [Tune: Sweet Sacrament] (2) 208.

Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass
Mass Ordinary: Missa secunda – Hans Leo Hassler, 1562-1612.
All are encouraged to sing the Creed at the Noon Mass, which may be found in the hymnal at No. 289.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Esto mihi (Be unto me a protecting God and a house of refuge, to save me; for you are my support and my refuge; and for the sake of your name you will lead me and nourish me. In you, O Lord, do I trust; let me never be put to shame; deliver me in your righteousness. []Ps. 31:3,4,2]); Alleluia Cantate Domino (Sing to the Lord a new song; for he has accomplished wondrous deeds. [Psalm 98:1]); Offertory Benedictus es Domine (Blessed are you, O Lord, teach me your commandments. O Lord, you are blessed, teach me your commandments. With my lips have I declared all the judgments spoken by your mouth. [Psalm 119:12,13]); Communion Manducaverunt (They ate and were fully satisfied; the Lord gave them all that they desired; they were not deprived of their wants. [Psalm 78:29.30]).
Offertory Motet: Cantate Domino – H. L. Hassler (O sing unto the Lord a new song; sing unto the Lord, all the whole earth.Sing unto the Lord, and praise his Name; be telling of his salvation from day to day. Declare his honour unto the heathen, and his wonders unto all people. [Ps. 96:1-3, trans. M. Coverdale]).
Communion Motet: O sacrum convivium – Franz Liszt, 1811-1886 (O sacred banquet, wherein Christ is made our food, the remembrance of his passion is renewed, the soul is filled with grace, and there is given us the pledge of future glory. Alleluia.), Sarah Bleasdale, Mezzo-soprano soloist.

Singers are needed for the 10:00 a.m. Family Mass! . . . Our volunteer choir raises hearts and voices in praise of God for the 10:00 AM Family Mass each Sunday. The choir rehearses at 8:15 AM on Sundays only, in the Choir Room. Would you consider lending your voice to our choir? Please call Scott Turkington for more information: 324-1553, ext. 18 or email at STurkington@optonline.net.

Shroud of Turin. . . An in-depth presentation about the Shroud, which is the burial cloth of Our Lord, will be offered in our parish hall on Tuesday, February 16th, at 7:30 pm. Full-sized photographic displays of the shroud and instruments of Our Lord’s Passion, along with the relics of various saints, will be available for close-up inspection . A great preparation for Lent. All are welcome; please join us.

St. Anne Society will meet February 21st, Next Sunday Night, at 5pm. The Evening will begin with Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament followed by a Pizza and Pasta dinner in the Hall at 5:30. Msgr. DiGiovanni will give a talk on The Dedication of the Basilica in preparation for the Dedication on February 22nd.

Mass Intentions
+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, February 13
4:00 +Erin Coughlin 1st Anniversary req. Joe McAleer
Sunday, February 14
7:30 Thanksgiving to God req. Fabiola C.
10:00 Souls in Purgatory req. Carpanzano Family
12:00 Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
6:00 Elizabeth Dixon req. Catherine Olnek
Monday, February 15
8:00 +John the Baptist Do req. Thang Nguyen
12:10 Forgotten Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry Galbert
Tuesday, February 16
8:00 Special Intention Fr. Terrence P. Walsh req. Thomas Timon
12:10 Special Intention Catherine Schwarz req. Jeannene & Ryan McMurchy
Wednesday, February 17
8:00 +Christina Monahan req. Elizabeth Neuwirth
12:10 +Dr. Frank Carr req. Dr. & Mrs. John Centonze
Thursday, February 18
8:00 +Umile Longo req. Josephine & Anthony Marena
12:10 +Christina Monahan req. Paul & Maude Hughes
Friday, February 19
8:00 +Timothy Patrick Murphy req. Mary Bridget Gains
12:10 +Sheila Kilcoyne req. Bill & Felicitas Cody
Saturday, February 20
8:00 +Dominick Carpanzano req. The Carpanzano Family
12:10 +Scholastica Lloyd req. Carmen Lara

Holy Name Society . . . meets Fridays in the Rectory, 7-7:50 a.m. for coffee, Eucharistic adoration & Benediction. All men of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society . . .meets Saturdays in the Rectory, at 9:30 a.m. for coffee, conversation, Rosary, and a spiritual conference. All ladies of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

Moms & Tots . . . Moms and their kids meets each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30 a.m. Please join us.

Religious Education. . . Sundays at 8:30 a.m. Sunday Mass attendance is a duty for all students and Catholic parents.

Convert class [RCIA]. . .Tuesday Evenings 7:30 pm—8:30 pm in the rectory. Call Fr. Walsh, ext. 14.

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

St. Dominic Savio Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young men from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert 203-324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, please contact Suzanna Boswick, 203-554-2004.

Introduction to Ecclesiastical Latin . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6pm in the rectory.

The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory.

The Legion of Mary. . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30pm in the rectory. All are welcome.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory All are welcome.

Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory.

Bible Study. . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory. Join us

Coffee Hour. . . After the 10:00 a.m. Mass. All are welcome.

St. John’s in the advocate:
100 years ago, or so:
February 16, 1893: “Mass was celebrated in St. John’s R.C. Church Ash Wednesday morning at eight o’clock, and was preceded by the blessing and distribution of ashes to the congregation. In the evening there was a benediction, after which ashes were distributed to those who are unable to attend the mass in the morning. During the Lenten season, services will be held every Wednesday and Friday evening at 7:30 o’clock.”

February 19, 1901: CELEBRATION AT CONVENT. “Sister Alexius, the mother superior of the Convent of Our Lady of Lourdes in this city, is today celebrating the twenty-fifth anniversary of her reception into the sisterhood. The celebration of the event began at the convent at 7 o’clock this morning, when a solemn high mass was celebrated there by the Rev. William H. Rogers of Hartford, formerly pastor of St. John’s Church, this city. Father Rogers was assisted in the celebration of mass by the local clergy. Sister Alexius made her profession 25 years ago. After a few months spent in teaching, in Hartford, she came to Stamford with three sisters of mercy and instituted the Convent of Our Lady of Lourdes. This was in April 1876. Sister Alexius has been in Stamford ever since.” (EDITOR’S NOTE: Sister Alexius was one of the original four sisters brought to Stamford by the Reverend Michael Tierney, then Pastor of St. John’s, to begin teaching at St. John’s School, then on Meadow St.)

February 20, 1899: Father Mulville to Preach. “At the mass for children in St. John’s R.C. Church, which is held in the basement at nine o’clock, there was congregational singing yesterday for the first time. The children sang very well indeed. At the services Wednesday evening, Rev. Frank Mulville of Hartford is announced to preach. Father Mulville is a Stamford man, and, as he is said to be a preacher of considerable ability, much interest will be taken in the sermon.” (EDITOR’S NOTE: John Mulville, father of the Reverend Francis X. Mulville, donated a stained glass window in the church. It is on the Rectory side, 4th from front.)

75 years ago, or so:
February 16 1934: TWO BOYS ATTAIN EAGLE RANKING AT SCOUT CEREMONY. “At the February court of honor of Stamford Council, Boy Scouts of America, two Scouts attained Eagle Scout rank, the highest Scout rating. They are James O’Brien, jr., and Robert Thayer, both of Troop 22, sponsored by St. John’s R. C. Church.”

A Pure Heart…– Fr. Terry Walsh

Have mercy on me, God, in your kindness.
In your compassion blot out my offense.
O wash me more and more from my guilt
And cleanse me from my sin. – Psalm 51

In his letter to the Ephesians, St. Paul teaches us that we must renew our “inner most being” – we must “put on the new man.” The 51st Psalm teaches us the disposition we must have in our hearts in order to be renewed. When we humbly approach the ‘mercy seat’ of our Lord; that is, when we enter into the Sacrament of Reconciliation having made a good examination of conscience and with a heart filled with sorrow for having offended God, we know with certainty that He will truly forgive us of our debts and what’s more, He will fill us with the necessary grace to overcome sin and turn away from temptation when it comes knocking at the door of our heart.
Confession, Penance, Reconciliation – it is a Sacrament of healing We are cleansed of our guilt, or as David sings in the Psalm:
O Purify me, then I shall be clean;
O wash me, I shall be whiter than snow.(51)

On Ash Wednesday, the prophet Joel exhorts us:
Rend your hearts, not your garments!
He teaches us that the ‘acceptable sacrifice’ is a contrite heart, an interior conversion. Our Lord waits for us in that interior room, our ‘inner sanctuary’ – He waits for our humble, childlike plea: Have mercy, wash me, cleanse me…teach me wisdom… purify me…blot out all my guilt…do not deprive me of your holy spirit.(51)
Our Lord thirsts for our hearts with a love beyond all telling. His mercy is infinite, His compassion fills the universe. His hand is always outstretched to meet ours – to lift us up out of the darkness. But we have to ask for His help. We have to seek His mercy. He respects our freedom. He doesn’t force us to repent. Otherwise, it wouldn’t really be an act of love for Him; it wouldn’t be true sorrow. It must be a free act. And so it is.
Our love for God and our desire to live IN Him should lead us into that true encounter with the One Who came to rescue us, the One Who came to heal us and restore us. And He tells us: “Be not afraid.” “Trust in Me.” “My mercy is infinitely greater than all the sins ever committed throughout all time.” “Simply ask, it will be done for you.” “What are you waiting for?”
Our Lord tells us through the Prophet Isaiah (1:18):
Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow;
Though they are red like crimson’ they shall become white as wool.
In the vestibule of the Church there are guides to Confession that may be helpful in preparing for the Sacrament, especially concerning the examination of our lives in light of the 10 Commandments, the Beatitudes (Matthew chapter 5), as well as the teachings of the Apostles. It’s a good beginning. These holy days of Lent beckon us to an interior purification; a conversion of heart that is lasting and fruitful and consequently, one that relies on the grace of our Lord to accomplish. Come to the ‘Mercy Seat’ and be healed….

A Pure Heart create for me, O God
Put a steadfast spirit within me. Ps 51

Bulletin for Sunday February 7, 2010

For the entire bulletin with pictures, please click the following link:
Bulletin for Sunday February 7, 2010

Pastor ’s Corner. . . February began with the commemoration two commemorations of martyrs: Saint Agatha and Saint Paul Mike and his companions.
Saint Agatha was martyred in 250/51 a.d. during the persecution of the Church by the Roman Emperor Decius. Clergy were first targeted; next the members of the propertied and ruling classes, under pain of exile and confiscation of property by the imperial treasure. Agatha was of a noble and wealthy Sicilian family, and her arrest by the Consul Quintinianus was motivated by his plot to take advantage of a young girl in order to obtain her property for himself, not by any desire to change her religious allegiance. He offered to rescue her life and fortune from the Empire: marry him, and she could live to enjoy her fortune, even though it would pass to Quintinianus at marriage. The Consul was surprised when Agatha refused his advances, showing she was made of stronger stuff: for her, this was not a question of fortune, but of her faith, since she had dedicated herself to Christ in perpetual virginity. Arrested, she was incarcerated in a brothel for thirty days to take care of her virtue. Having failed to break, she was beaten, tortured on the rack, her flesh torn with hooks and her breasts cut off. Appearing once again before the Consul, she repeated her dedication to Christ. She was strapped on a bed of coals, then rolled over broken potsherds. The Acta of her martyrdom recall her final prayer asking pardon for her persecutors, and continued, “Lord, my Creator, you have ever protected me from the cradle. You have taken from me the love of the world, and given me patience to suffer; receive now my soul.” She was only a teenager.
During the persecutions in Japan between 1587 and 1715 a.d., some estimate the total number of Christian martyrs to be as high as 35,000 persons. Paul Miki and his 25 companions died on February 5, 1597. Paul was born in Japan, baptized as a child, and entered the Society of Jesus, which, along with the Franciscans, were the first missionaries whose efforts were successful. He was renowned for his preaching and charity. To break down the Church’s influence, the government required Christians to desecrate a copper image of the Crucified Lord. Twenty-six priests, lay catechists and children—altar servers—were crucified on a hillside in Nagasaki because they refused to comply. Here is part of an eyewitness account of the martyrs as they hung from their crosses: “When Paul Miki saw himself set at the head of the band of martyrs, he openly proclaimed that he was a Japanese and a member of the Society of Jesus, and that he was dying for having preached the gospel, a reward for which he thanked God. Then he added, ’In such a moment as this, none of you, I suppose, will think that I want to say less than the truth. I tell you, therefore, that there is no way to salvation but the Christian way. It teaches me to pardon my enemies and all who have harmed me. I therefore willingly pardon the emperor and all who are putting me to death, and I ask them to accept Christian baptism.’ Then he turned to his companions and began to hearten them for the final struggle.
“The faces of all were filled with joy, but it shone especially in the face of Louis. . . Anthony, at Louis’ side, kept his eyes to heaven, called upon the holy names of Jesus and Mary.
Still others of the martyrs kept repeating serenely: ‘Jesus, Mary.’ Some exhorted the bystanders to a worthy Christian life. In all these ways they showed how ready they were to die.
“The four executioners then unsheathed their lances; it was a grisly sight and all the believers present cried, ‘Jesus, Mary’. Their cries of distress filled the air as the executioners thrust their lances into the sides of the crucified men and boys, slaying the martyrs in short order.” [Acta Sanctorum, Feb. 1, 1769]. Loving Christ is serious business, and these martyrs are inspirations for us as we draw near to Lent. —Mons. DiGiovanni

Please pray for the sick… Wilfred Baretto, Haitian EarthquaeVictims, Mary Moriarty, Carmella Micik, Julie Grant, Kay Pullen, Lois Porter, Joseph Lasko, Billy Therriault, Wendy Woodin, Janet Rodgers, Kevin Sutton, Anne Marie Brutus, Rene Villard, Corrie Evans, Margaret Romaine.

Please pray for those who have recently died…Frank L. Infante, Dolores A. Deluca Freccia, Haitian Earthquake Victims, Roshah E. DeJean, Paul Reda, Katherine Dziezyc, Mary Halbert, John Castellano, Eugene Lops, Msgr. Lawrence McMahon, Rev. Al Russo, George “Bud” Ayers, William Wolf, Alfred Gautrau, David Lloyd, Evelyn Mahan, Joseph Logsdail, Peggy Pikul, Monsignor John Horgan Kung, Theodore Pikul, Rosemary Hynes Finn, George T. Murphy, William Morris, Jesus Cala, Liliane Joelle Tsemo, Elizabeth A. Coughlin, Hector Jance, Paul Rittman.

The Board of Representatives. . .of the City of Stamford has bestowed a great honor on Saint John’s: On Monday evening, a resolution was passed unanimously by the Board congratulating Saint John’s on our new dignity as a Minor Basilica. I am very grateful to the Board of Representatives; and in particular, I am grateful to Representative Mary Savage for having initiated this resolution on behalf of our beloved parish.

Mass On Line. . . Visit the parish website: www.stjohnsstamford.com, click the photo of the church up top, and you’ll see live all that’s going on in church, daily. ALSO, a light now burns all night in church, illuminating the tabernacle, so you can make a home visit to the Blessed Sacrament. Note: Internet Explorer required for audio. Audio will not work on Apple Computer’s Safari browser nor on Firefox.

Basilica Inauguration. . . Mark your calendar: Bishop Lori will formally inaugurate the Basilica of Saint John the Evangelist on Monday February 22nd at 7 pm with Solemn Evening Prayer and Benediction celebrating the Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter. All are invited.

Metropolitan Opera at Saint John’s. . . Mark your calendar- May 1st, sponsored by the Richard Tucker Foundation and in honor of His Eminence Edward Cardinal Egan, to begin our fundraising efforts to repaint the church interior. Details forthcoming.

Saint Patrick’s Parade. . . The Annual Parade Dinner will be held at the Ancient Order of Hibernians Hall on Greyrock Place, on Friday, March 6th at 7 pm. Monsignor DiGiovanni has been named the Grand Marshall of this year’s parade. If you’d like to attend the dinner, please contact: Tim McGuinness [203-327-1866; 646-728-3466; tmcguinness@icsc.org] The evening is great fun: a cocktail hour, superb food with wine and beer, a cash bar and Irish dancing and music. Please join us for Stamford’s Annual Saint Patrick’s Parade on Saturday, March 13th. The parade steps off at 12 noon from lower Summer Street, and proceeds around the center of town. Great marching band, Irish dancers and bagpipers show off their talents in honor of Saint Patrick. Join us and be proud to be Irish—even if only for the day.

Upcoming Parish Events. . . This Spring will be filled with special parish activities:
May 1st: The Metropolitan Opera at Saint Johns, to benefit the parish;
May 7th: Clark Eno Jazz Orchestra will provide an evening of Jazz favorites;
May 13th: The Manhattan String Quartet will perform classical favorites;
May 29th: The Lumina String Quintet will perform chamber music favorites;
June 3rd, 4th & 5th: Agatha Christie’s Mousetrap, presented by The Parish Rectory Players;
June 6th: The Corpus Christi procession through the streets of Stamford.
Mark your calendars and plan to join us—and bring along a friend or two.

Sunday January 31, 2010 $ 10,489.50

Sunday February 1, 2009 $ 12,542.45 “I ask you one thing: do not tire of giving to God, but do not give your leftovers.”
—Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

February 14th Sunday Readings: Jer 17:5-8; 1 Cor 15:12, 16-20; Lk 6:17, 20-26.

Hymns for this weekend . . . (1) 96 (2) 225.

Choral Music for the 12:00 Noon Mass
Mass Ordinary: Missa ‘Simile est regnum cælorum’ – Tomás Luis de Victoria, 1548-1611.
All are encouraged to sing the Creed at the Noon Mass, which may be found in the hymnal at No. 289.
The Gregorian chants proper to this Sunday are: Introit Venite adoremus Deum (Come, let us worship God and bow down before the Lord; let us shed tears before the Lord who made us, for he is the Lord our God. Come, let us sing to the Lord; let us make a joyful noise unto God our Saviour. [Ps. 95: 6,7,1]); Alleluia Laudate Dominum (Praise the Lord all nations; praise him in unison, all peoples. [Psalm 117:1]); Offertory Perfice gressus meos (Render secure my footsteps in your paths so that my feet do not slip; incline your ear and hear my words; display your wonderful mercies, O Lord, Saviour of those who place their hope in you. [Psalm 17:5,6,7]); Communion Introibo ad altare Dei (I will go in to the altar of God, to the God who gives joy to my youth. [Psalm 43:4]).
Offertory Motet: Like as the hart – Herbert Howells, 1892-1983 (Like as the hart desireth the waterbrooks, so longeth my soul after thee, O God. My soul is athirst for God, yea, even for the living God. When shall I come to appear before the presence of God? My tears have been my meat day and night, when they daily say unto me, Where is now thy God? [Ps. 42:1-3, trans. M. Coverdale]).
Communion Motet: Ego sum Panis vivus – Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, 1525-1594 (I am the living bread. Your forefathers ate manna in the desert and are dead; this is the living bread from heaven: whoever eats it shall not die. [from St. John: 6]).

Singers are needed for the 10:00 a.m. Family Mass! . . . Our volunteer choir raises hearts and voices in praise of God for the 10:00 AM Family Mass each Sunday. The choir rehearses at 8:15 AM on Sundays only, in the Choir Room. Would you consider lending your voice to our choir? Please call Scott Turkington for more information: 324-1553, ext. 18 or email at STurkington@optonline.net.

Shroud of Turin. . . An in-depth presentation about the Shroud, which is the burial cloth of Our Lord, will be offered in our parish hall on Tuesday, February 16th, at 7:30 pm. Full-sized photographic displays of the shroud and instruments of Our Lord’s Passion, along with the relics of various saints, will be available for close-up inspection . A great preparation for Lent. All are welcome; please join us.

Mass Intentions+ Denotes Deceased
Saturday, February 6
4:00 Special Intention Nicki Carpenter req. Jeannene & Ryan McMurchy
Sunday, February 7
7:30 +Alexander Finlay Munro 32nd Anniversary req. Munro & De Vivo Families
10:00 +Vincenzo Giannitti req. Giannitti Family
12:00 Special Intention John Kung req. Joseph & Agnes Kung
6:00 In Honor of Our Lady of Fatima req. Gina Uva
Monday, February 8
8:00 People of the Parish
12:10 +Eva, Charles, Anna & Joseph Kronk and Irene Churley req. Mary Churley
Tuesday, February 9
8:00 Souls in Purgatory req. Fabiola C.
12:10 +Catherine Wellington req. Thomas Kolenberg
Wednesday, February 10
8:00 Special Intention Brian Fuhro req. Jeannene & Ryan McMurchy
12:10 +Dorothy C.F. Bergeson req. Anthony & Josephine Marena
Thursday, February 11
8:00 Special Intention George Paulemon req. Mother
12:10 Forgotten Souls in Purgatory req. Ferry G.
Friday, February 12
8:00 +John & Rose Gaine req. Mary Bridget Gains
12:10 Tal Talentino – Millie
Saturday, February 13
8:00 +Hope & Joseph McAleer req. the McAleer Family
12:10 +Cyril Lloyd req. Carmen Lara

Holy Name Society . . . meets Fridays in the Rectory, 7-7:50 a.m. for coffee, Eucharistic adoration& Benediction. All men of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

The Immaculate Heart of Mary Ladies’ Society . . .meets Saturdays in the Rectory, at 9:30 a.m. for coffee, conversation, Rosary, and a spiritual conference. All ladies of the parish are welcome. Just walk in.

Moms & Tots . . . Moms and their kids meets each first Tuesday of every month at 10:30 a.m. Please join us.

Religious Education. . . Sundays at 8:30 a.m. Sunday Mass attendance is a duty for all students and Catholic parents.

Convert class [RCIA]. . .Tuesday Evenings 7:30 pm—8:30 pm in the rectory. Call Fr. Walsh, ext. 14.

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

St. Dominic Savio Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young men from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, contact Ferry Galbert 203-324-1553 ext. 22.

St. Maria Goretti Society. . . For the spiritual formation of young ladies from 8th – 12th grades. Meets monthly. Questions, please contact Suzanna Boswick, 203-554-2004.

Introduction to Ecclesiastical Latin . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6pm in the rectory.

The Latin Reading Group. . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 6:15 pm in the rectory.

The Legion of Mary. . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30pm in the rectory. All are welcome.

St. Monica Institute for Patristic Studies . . . Meets Wednesday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory All are welcome.

Introduction to Biblical Greek . . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 6:30 pm in the rectory.

Bible Study. . . Meets Thursday Evenings at 7:30 pm in the rectory. Join us

Coffee Hour. . . After the 10:00 a.m. Mass. All are welcome.

St. John’s in THE NEWS:
The CONNECTICUT CATHOLIC:
120 years ago, or so:
February 11, 1888: STAMFORD. “Mr. John White, who has been engaged in the coal and wood business many years with Mr. Theodore Davenport, has started business for himself with Mr. Patrick Hanrahan, having bought out the interest of Mr. Davenport. The new firm of John White & Co. starts out with a practical knowledge of the business and has before it a bright field for success. Their many friends wish for them every success in their new enterprise.” (EDITOR’S NOTE: Mr. & Mrs. John White were the donors on a stained glass window in the church, Bell Street side, second from front.)

The stamford advocate:
100 years ago, or so:
February 11, 1916: CAST OF “MIKADO” FEAST AND FROLIC. “After weeks of rigorous training and discipline, after faithful attendance upon the endless detail in rehearsal for the big event, after a matinee and an evening performance on Feb. 2, which elicited high praise from competent judges of opera values, the local “Mikado” company assembled, last evening, to relax, to frolic, to feast and dance—in short, to enjoy its own sweet will. The entertainment hall of St. John’s Parochial School was most tastefully decorated in keeping with the dominant idea of the evening. The affair was in charge of Committee Chairman A.F. Tynes, Miss Madeleine Shea and E. C. Regan, who are to be congratulated upon both the conception and execution of their plans. Ably assisting the committee, a delegation from St. Anne’s Ladies’ Aid Society performed the indispensable part of arranging the tables and the good things upon them. At the close of the program, Rev. Father O’Brien was called upon, and he responded in a happy vein with an “open confession” of his love for opera since his student days. In well-chosen words, he conveyed to the company his thankful appreciation of their work.”

The stamford advocate:
50 years ago, or so:
February 13 1961: CYO Quintets Continue Play In Round-Robin. “St. Cecilia’s turned back Holy Name, 44-35, in the high school division of the CYO round-robin second half playoff series, at the St. Mary High School Gym Sunday afternoon. In the grammar school division, St. John’s of Stamford was a 25-18 victor over St. Mary. Kem Clark and Brian Malloy led the winners with eight points each. Bob Trout’s seven points was tops for the losers.”

Clear Understanding
-Fr. Terry Walsh
The first Catholic school I attended was St. Anselm College. And it was there that I began to understand that among my fellow Catholics, there existed a wide range of opinions on just about every aspect of our faith. Previously, I simply presumed that everyone was more or less on the same page. I began to wonder – what if I asked 10 friends the same question concerning some teaching of our faith or some question concerning the moral teachings of the Church, would I be given the same answer? After all, it’s the same Church right? But I began to see that the answers were a little different in some cases. Indeed, it was not merely the slight nuances that began to concern me; it was the answers that seemed to oppose one another. I knew that something couldn’t be true and not true at the same time. Why indeed were there differences? Who was right and who was wrong? Where did the ultimate authority rest?
Thankfully, our Lord provided. He gave the keys to Peter and he promised that he would send the Holy Spirit to lead and guide the Church through St. Peter. The authority ultimately rests with Peter (and his successors – today – Pope Benedict XVI) and the College of Bishops, also known as the Magesterium. Through the teaching office of the Church, the Magesterium, we have been given the Catechism of the Catholic Church. In it, we find a wonderfully written explanation of the teachings of the Church regarding faith and morals. Moreover, there are 100’s and 100’s of footnotes that direct our attention to the Scriptures, the Writings of the Saints, the Documents of Church Councils and the like. Indeed, the Church offers us a treasure of information that helps to clarify our understanding of our faith and leads us into a deeper appreciation of gift of the Magisterium, guided by the Holy Spirit. The Compendium of the Catechism is a shorter, more succinct reference tool written in question format that is easy to read and at the same time enormously helpful. Both the Catechism and the Compendium are divided into 4 parts: Part I: The Creed. The Creed is after all the most important section. It is the outline of our faith: Who is God? Who are we in relation to Him? What is our response to Him? And so on. Part II: The Sacraments How does God nourish and heal us? How is He acting in our soul? How is He forming us – with our cooperation of course – into a more perfect image and likeness of Himself? Part III: The Moral Life (The 10 Commandments, more clearly understood), The Beatitudes, Virtue and Vice, Grace at work, and so on. And, finally, Part IV: Prayer. It is the shortest section in the Catechism, yet it is beautifully written and answers common questions concerning distractions in prayer, the battle of prayer, the various levels of prayer, and so on. In fact, when someone asks me where to begin, I normally recommend that they begin with Part 4. Start with a deeper understanding of Prayer.
We have so many resources available to us. But do we avail ourselves of these treasures? They are meant to be read. They’re written for everyone, not just for scholars or theologians or those with religious vocations. Our faith is the most important thing we have! Do we honor God by devoting time to the study of our faith and the moral teachings of the Church? As we read and ponder the Catechism, we will quite naturally become more deeply rooted in a clear understanding of the path we are called to walk and at the same time we will better lead our neighbor as well. The documents are readily available online for free and in any bookstore for a nominal fee. What wonderful respect we show our Lord when we seek to understand the true message the Church gives us through the Magisterium. It is and act of love for God. Our clearer understanding will likewise enable us to help one another on the true path to holiness.