Official publication of The Diocese of Trenton
Vol. 1 • No. 11 • AUGUST 2020
Faith Forward INSIDE
As the struggle to return to life before COVID-19 moves forward, serving others remains a priority for the Catholic community in our parishes, schools and social service programs. As stated by one Catholic high school principal who is preparing for whatever the fall may bring, “Life in Christ cannot be put on the back burner.” Indeed, the pandemic has drastically altered daily routines and upended lives. But Christian values have not been shaken.
FROM THE BISHOP: Settling on the definition of truth BACK TO SCHOOL: Diligent planning takes pandemic changes into account EL ANZUELO: Escuelas, hogares y la pandemia; obispo reflexiona sobre ‘verdad’
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2 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
Rich Hundley photo
ON THE COVER A family learns about healthy eating July 23 during the CYO’s “Farm to Family Program” at its Bromley Center in Hamilton. The Mercer County Catholic Youth Organization is among the many Catholic agencies, schools, parishes and individuals unthwarted in their dedication to service during COVID-19. Mike Ehrmann photo
Contents 5-6 From the Bishop Truth, regardless of who believes, remains unchanged and accessible to all
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14 Pastoral Conversion Vatican’s ‘blueprint for evangelization’ validates absolute good of parish community
22-25 El Anzuelo Obispo reflexiona sobre la verdad; apoyo para hogares estresados; escuelas responden a nueva realidad
26-40 Back to School New principals, innovative preparations to greet Diocese’s young learners this fall
52-53 Sports Students’ ‘Last Dance’ baseball tournament triumphs over COVID-19 canceled season
REGULAR FEATURES 12 Viewpoints 19 Pope Francis 21-22 World & Nation 42-44 Insight from Fathers Koch & Doyle 58 Puzzles
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August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 3
Remembering who we are, and whose we are
he well-known exhortation “Remember who you are, and whose you are,” commonly attributed to the late Sister Thea Bowman, might well describe much of the effort and thinking that we focus on in this August issue of The Monitor Magazine. In these strange times, we find ourselves weary of the restrictions of the coronavirus, anxious to get back to normal life, and yet worried about the risk that seems to be intractable and in some areas is even increasing. As we manage these competing concerns, the example of many whose stories we share in this issue reminds us that we are Catholic Christians first and we are called to build the
Bishop extends Mass dispensation
Kingdom right from where we stand. Our stories this month spotlight those who have demonstrated a commitment to serve others, the patience and determination to create a safe environment for Mass-goers, the faithful planning of educators and parents as the start of a
As Catholics, it is not enough to get through these challenges alone. new school year is swiftly arriving. It is difficult and consuming work, but readers will see that the rewards are great. What can each of us do from where we stand to give witness to the Gospel, to help others, to build the Kingdom? One sure thing is to pray for all those who are giving so much of themselves to these efforts, including those who are the decision
A message from
RAYANNE BENNETT Associate Publisher
makers. Let’s pray that when faced with potentially life-and-death consequences, they will make the right call in their deliberations. Let’s also remember that following public health guidelines like wearing masks and maintaining social distancing – as well as accepting the restrictions that have been established by those trying to protect us – are essential and simple ways that we can “love one another.” For Catholics, it is not enough to get through these challenges alone. Success is not based solely on our return to work or school or karate lessons. We are called to do more, and we can draw much inspiration from those who speak to us in the pages of this magazine. Read on!
BISHOP DAVID M. O’CONNELL, C.M., ISSUED THE FOLLOWING MESSAGE JULY 30, 2020:
Given all current public health and safety reports, I am extending the dispensation from Sunday obligation to attend Mass beyond the aforementioned September 7 date listed in our Diocesan Directives “until further notice.” The faithful are certainly encouraged, but not required, to attend Sunday Mass in their parishes whenever possible or to participate in outdoor or live-streamed parish Masses offered online until the dispensation ceases “to keep holy the Lord’s Day.” Please continue to remember one another in prayer, especially the sick, the departed and all those providing care for them at this time. Respectfully in the Lord, Bishop O’Connell
Questions on digital access? The Monitor team updates the website frequently with news articles, photos, videos and more. Subscribers to The Monitor Magazine also have unlimited, digital access to TrentonMonitor.com and to the digital edition of the magazine. If you haven’t yet accessed this digital content, go to the homepage at TrentonMonitor.com and log in on the right side of the page. Your username is your Sub ID# taken from your address label, and your password is your ZIP code. Need help? Reach out to Monitor-Subscriptions@ DioceseofTrenton.org, or call 609-406-7405.
4 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
From the Bishop
In the Lord Jesus, we walk in truth
e are all familiar with the tense moment of confrontation between Pontius Pilate and the Lord Jesus when Pilate demands “what is truth?” in response to the Lord Jesus’ revelation “I have come into this world to testify to the truth ( John 18: 37-38).” Pilate was not the first to ask such a question, and the Lord Jesus was not the first to be on the receiving end. “Truth” has been the subject of study, inquiry and debate throughout most of recorded history. Philosophers, theologians, scholars, students, people of faith, people of no faith have questioned and argued its meaning down through the ages. Sooner or later, we simply have to settle on an idea or definition of truth and go with it. When I studied scholas As Catholic tic (medieval) philosophy in the seminary many years ago, Christians, I remember reading various we believe the philosophical definitions of truth. The one that made the Bible to be most sense to me was that of St. the Word of God. Thomas Aquinas in his Summa Theologiae (ST): “truth is the conformity of the mind to that which exists in reality (ST I.16.1).” Notice that there are two parts to his definition: (1) that which exists in reality – in other words, that which is; and, (2) the conformity of the mind, the intellect, to it. I will spare you a breakdown of philosophers’ reactions over the centuries, both “pro and con,” to Aquinas’ idea because it seems so obviously accurate to me. TESTIFYING TO THE TRUTH Back to the Lord Jesus. “I have come into this world to testify to the truth,” I quoted earlier from the Lord Jesus’ dialogue with Pontius Pilate. Elsewhere in the Gospels, the Lord Jesus reveals himself as “truth” when he says to Thomas, the Doubting
A Message from
BISHOP DAVID M. O’CONNELL, C.M.
Bishop David M. O’Connell observes: “People have been . . . working for their own ends trying to turn faithful ‘ears from the truth’ in favor of ‘myths’ they propose instead. But, as Jesus cautions in the Gospel of Matthew, ‘the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and only a few find it (Matthew 7: 14).’”
Apostle, later in John’s Gospel: “I am the way and the truth and the life (John 14: 6).” Truth is, as we acknowledge, that which is, and our ability to see, comprehend, understand and conform our minds to it as it actually is. The Lord Jesus certainly fits that description. There is a definite connection beShutterstock photo tween the Lord Jesus’ self-identifying declaration in the Gospel of John – “I am the truth” – and the long-standing Old Testament concept of God. In the Book of Exodus, we read the familiar story of “Moses at the Burning Bush (Exodus 3: 1-15).” When God first appeared and spoke to him, Moses asked God for his name so that he could tell the Israelites. “I am” was God’s response (Exodus 3: 14). The fact that God revealed and identified himself in a way that Moses and the Israelites could understand in order to know him, makes it possible that their minds could correspond to his reality and find “truth,” the same truth revealed by the Lord Jesus centuries later when he identified himself as “truth.” As Catholic Christians, we believe the Bible to be the “Word of God, the Word of the Lord” and, therefore, the truth. Scholars refer to this truth as the “inerrancy of Scripture.” There are all kinds of literature and literary forms employed by the inspired authors of biblical texts, some which even differ from one another, but the truth of their revelation, despite the differences, is not contradictory. They point to the same reality. That is what we believe as Catholic Christians. Different literary forms or genres
Continued on 6
August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 5
From the Bishop
Seeking truth with Catholic ears Continued from 5
are used to make truth accessible and known to the human mind and intellect. Truth, therefore, has a claim on our human minds and intellects, which results in human behaviors and conduct that conform to it. Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free (John 8: 31-32).” In the Lord Jesus, we walk in truth. That has been and is the long journey of the Church, unparalleled anywhere else in human history. As Catholic Christians, we believe that not only the Holy Scriptures but also the Church’s teaching and tradition are fonts of God’s revealed truth. Knowing truth, trusting truth should make a genuine difference in our lives. THE CHURCH AND THE TRUTH The Catholic Church has hit some rough spots over the centuries, for sure. But there have also been many more positive developments and external changes over the ages, including the ways we express the truth(s) of our faith. Truth itself has not changed. The Lord Jesus Christ “is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13: 8)!” The Lord Jesus has not changed his mind about the Catholic Church he established either. It is still responsible for revealing truth, presenting truth, teaching truth and witnessing truth, day in and day out, every day.
We read in the Second Letter to Timothy: “I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with great patience and instruction. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance with their own desires and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths (2 Timothy 4: 1-4).” St. Paul has hit the nail on the head here, so to speak. People have been “tickling the ears” of Christians sincerely seeking truth from the earliest days of the Church, setting themselves up as “teachers in accordance with their own desires,” working for their own ends trying to turn faithful “ears from the truth” in favor of “myths” they propose instead. But, as Jesus cautions in the Gospel of Matthew, “the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and only a few find it (Matthew 7: 14).” The Catechism reminds us: In Jesus Christ, the whole of God’s truth has been made manifest. “Full of grace and truth,” he came as the “light of the world,” he is the Truth. … To follow Jesus is to live in “the Spirit of truth,” whom the Father sends in his name and who leads “into all the truth.” To his disciples Jesus teaches the unconditional love of truth … Man tends by nature toward the truth. He is obliged to honor and bear witness to it: “It is in accordance with their dignity that all men, because they are persons . . . are
According to Bishop O’Connell, “As Catholic Christians, we believe the Bible to be the ‘Word of God, the Word of the Lord’ and, therefore, the truth. Scholars refer to this truth as the ‘inerrancy of Scripture.’ . . . Different literary forms or genres are used to make truth accessible and known to the human mind and intellect.” Stock photo
6 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
both impelled by their nature and bound by a moral obligation to seek the truth, especially religious truth. They are also bound to adhere to the truth once they come to know it and direct their whole lives in accordance with the demands of truth (CCC 2466- 2467).” This is why the “One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church” believes what it does, professes what it does, teaches what it does, practices what it does; this the “deposit of faith” as it is known. This “deposit of faith” in the Catholic Church includes a comprehensive creedal statement of truth(s) as well as a set of valid moral teachings and expectations based upon it for a reason: to lead faithful Catholic Christians through that “small gate and narrow way that leads to life,” away from “myths” and the “tickling of ears.” Truth is not true because we believe it. Truth is true whether we believe it or not. Truth is not true today and false tomorrow. Truth is not the object of whims; it is not the subject of opinion polls or majority votes; it is not the “stuff” of arbitrary decisions based upon what is easiest or most convenient to follow or what “feels good” at any particular point in time. Truth is the Lord Jesus dwelling among us in the Church he established. Truth is what the Church teaches based upon his revelation, unfolding in tradition from generation to generation. Truth is “Peter” upon whom the Lord Jesus built his Church so that, as he said, “what is bound on earth is so bound in heaven (Matthew 18: 18).” On the night before he died for us, the Lord Jesus gathered his Apostles together and prayed to his Father for them, “Consecrate them in the truth. Your Word is Truth. As you sent me into the world, so I sent them into the world ... I pray not only for them but also for those who will believe in me through their word (John 17:17-20).” We live in confusing times, in times of doubt, in times of bitter division in virtually every sphere of human endeavor. I believe that every once in a while it is important to remind ourselves that there is a truth that is greater than the opinions and agendas that seem to drive the divide that separates us from one another. The truth is the Lord Jesus and his Gospel. The mission of our Church is to share that truth with the world.
With cautious optimism, journey back to church continues in parishes around Diocese
“We’ve had no problem at all since we reopened,” Father Oscar Sumanga said of in-church Masses in St. Anthony of Padua Parish, Hightstown. Courtesy photo
Many Happy Returns BY LOIS ROGERS Correspondent
eservations requested but not required.” That’s how Father Edward Blanchett refers to the “cautious but joyful” ongoing reopening of inchurch Masses at Brick’s Visitation Parish. “Walk-ins are accepted,” Father Blanchett said. “We have had a slow but steady increase in people entering the church for Masses. We use our [new] ‘Take Your Place at Table’ online telephone reservation system to ensure that we do not go over capacity requirements.” The reservation system at Visitation is a prime example of the ways pastors and their staffs throughout the Diocese continue to welcome parishioners to in-person Masses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
‘GOING VERY WELL’ The uptick in in-church attendance has been underway since limited Masses resumed the week of June 8 under guidelines by
Bishop David M. O’Connell, C.M., which included input from the Post-Pandemic Parish Task Force of Pastors he established. It’s a sign of the times that have been evolving since the coronavirus arrived, forcing church doors to close across the state in late March. Faithful have continued to journey back – which began with private prayer in church and parking lot Masses in mid-May, followed by the return to in “They are so church Mass with restrictions such as facemasks and social gracious and just distancing in pews. Currently, happy to be back churches can welcome one-third of their capacity under the multiphase plan for parishes to fully in church.” reopen in the Diocese of Trenton. “For the most part, people have been quite cooperative in observing the guidelines. ... Whenever we have to ask people to go beyond the accustomed ways, the ministers, ordained and Continued on 8
August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 7
Parishes learn to remain flexible Continued from 7
otherwise explain the ‘what’ and the ‘why’ of a policy,” Father Blanchett said. “Even when we’ve had to say ‘No’ to a request, we’ve done our best to engage people’s reason as well as the requirements. “Doing this, I think has helped both our processes and the congregation’s acceptance of the new policies,” he said. Meanwhile, alternatives to in-church Masses, such as livestreaming and those celebrated in parking lots, continue. In St. Catharine-St. Margaret Parish, Spring Lake, parishioners avail themselves of every opportunity to celebrate their faith. “It’s been going very well,” said Father Damian McElroy, parish pastor. “People have been delighted to go to Mass [in person], and we’ve had wonderful [attendees] who keep their social distance.” Especially rewarding: celebrating First Holy Communion for 75 children and weddings that were on hold until recently. “There’s a huge reservoir of weddings,” he said, explaining that due to the limited number of guests allowed, weddings have become more intimate affairs. “Over-complications have been avoided. I’ve seen the bride and groom and their parents relaxed and laughing. The focus is where it should be,” Father McElroy said – on God and the young couple exchanging vows with the community. Still, challenges remain for the Jersey Shore parish, which faces financial shortfalls even with strong parish attendance and planned giving. There are concerns that the financial increase typically received from its summer congregation may not materialize this year, he said. “What we’re doing is a work in progress. We’re doing our best,” Father McElroy said. “We always keep reviewing the situation.” OPEN COMMUNICATION In St. Anthony of Padua Parish, Hightstown, reopening the church began with two weekend Masses – one in English and one in Spanish. “We’ve had no problem at all since we reopened,” pastor Father Oscar Sumanga
said, explaining that the services have been filled to the allowable capacity with all protocols observed. “Ushers bring the parishioners to their seats, leaving a vacant pew in-between. People can stand or kneel for Holy Communion, and we have increased our Mass schedule because of demand, adding a [bilingual] Mass.” For those who wish to remain in their cars and not attend in-church Mass, the Eucharist is distributed to motorists as they exit the large parking lot. Father Sumanga said many in the diverse community have been hard hit Father Philip Pfleger, pastor of St. Isaac Jogues Parish, Marlton, and economically by the St. John Neumann Parish, Mount Laurel, says his parish communities coronavirus. “Many are adapting well to COVID-19 safety procedures. Courtesy photo have lost their jobs. [To understand that. It’s a scary time,” he said. assist with family expenses,] we have been In his 41 years of ministry, Father able to hold drive-through food giving and fill up their trunks weekly [with donations],” Pfleger said he has nothing to compare to the circumstances brought on by the panhe said. At the same time, Father Sumanga said demic. “Life has changed, and we are all he has been open about how the pandemic trying to do the best we can. It has helped us realize that our faith isn’t based in a has affected the parish’s finances. “People building or a small community. It’s based respond generously. The parish should be in the people of God.” a threshold of truth in whatever situation “That’s what we’re trying to show,” he we are in.” continued. “That it’s the same Church ADAPTING TO THE TIMES wherever we are, and we are here for the Father Philip Pfleger, pastor in St. Isaac Eucharist.” Jogues, Marlton, and St. John Neumann, No matter how they attend Mass, Mount Laurel, said the reopening has been parishioners have been actively engaged going well. “Parishioners have been folin helping meet the community’s needs lowing the guidelines. They are so gracious through the parish food bank, Father and just happy to be back in church.” Pfleger said. Many families are following livestream “People have been so generous,” he said. Mass, he explained. “There are not many “They realize that this is what we need to families with children coming to church. I do as a family.”
8 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
Communication continues to evolve for return to church BY LOIS ROGERS Correspondent
The stipulations put forth by Bishop David M. O’Connell, C.M., remain in effect and help to lower health risks for in-church Masses.
astors and parish staff agree that technology – including email, texting, livestreaming and virtual meeting platforms – has been a godsend in keeping their communities connected throughout the coronavirus crisis. From the start, staff in St. Benedict Parish, Holmdel, livestreamed daily and weekend Masses via social media. Lori Ulrich, parish marketing director, shared how staff have been learning new skills, identifying best practices and researching ways to make livestreaming Masses permanent. The staff went on to share “We also helpful tips and advice with neighboring parishes. Prior to assigned our COVID-19, their YouTube parish staff channel had 10 subscribers. Today, it has more than 600. to call every Another key form of information across the Diocese: family. We bulletins, which many parishes continued to update online were always in over the past five months. contact.” “We’ve been encouraging parishioners with online access to print out copies for their friends and neighbors. We have also been making extensive use of our parish website, Facebook page and [sending] Flocknotes to keep parishioners up-to-date with rapidly changing situations,” said Father Edward Blanchett, pastor of Brick’s Visitation Parish. Flocknote.com is a church-based email and texting service that provides instantaneous online communication with all parishioners. Faithful of St. Catharine-St. Margaret Parish, Spring Lake, have been checking their email for the parish’s “daily message.” An inspiration of Father Damian McElroy, pastor, the message includes Scripture, a call to volunteer, a gentle request to contribute to the parish if possible, community updates and an invitation to message back with any insights or concerns. Father Oscar Sumanga shared that from the start, parishioners of St. Anthony of Padua, Hightstown, were asked to “share contact information so that we could use email, texting and phone calls. We also assigned our staff to call every family. We assured them of our prayers and sent out weekly newsletters. We were always in contact.” August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 9
‘Truly a lifesaver’ Catholic ministries say federal PPP funds critical to continuing community outreach BY JENNIFER MAURO Managing Editor
he federal funds that dioceses, parishes and other Catholic entities across the nation have received through the Paycheck Protection Program have provided a lifeline for essential ministries during the coronavirus pandemic, say those in the Diocese of Trenton.
“You read about so many sad stories of businesses and especially nonprofit agencies – typically the backbone of community services in most areas – that have closed down because of the dire financial effects of this pandemic,” said Tom Mladenetz, executive director of the Mercer County Catholic Youth Organization. Noting that many of those nonprofits are, in fact, faith-based, he continued. “The CYO was one of the lucky ones to weather this storm, although many challenges still face us ahead. We were blessed to receive this PPP funding and so were the families we continued to serve.” REVENUE HALT In early April, Congress approved – and President Donald Trump signed into law – the $349 billion Paycheck Protection Program as part of a $484 billion emergency relief measure developed in response to the economic fallout caused by the spread of COVID-19. Congress later allocated an additional $310 “The billion for the loan program program, which is administered by was a the Small Business Administration. godsend.” “This program was truly a lifesaver,” Mladenetz said. “All our childcare programs, recreational activities, facility rentals, etc. came to a screeching halt in mid-March. This means the bulk of the CYO revenue also stopped. Fortunately, the PPP funding was a major
for Bromley-area children,” he said. “On designated days, our partners at the Armin-Arm nonprofit provided bulk food distribution at all CYO locations, and the CYO provided free books to our families for summer reading. “It was heartwarming to hear so many parents thank our staff for helping them make it through a very difficult time. That’s what the CYO does; it is our mission to help everyone in the community.” LOCAL IMPACT
If used as outlined – for payroll costs, mortgage interest, rent and utilities – the Paycheck Protection Program loans can convert into grants and be forgiven, an important designation as the Diocese of Trenton comprises a community of parishes, schools and organizations that together employ about 7,000 individuals. By some estimates, thousands of individual churches, schools, food pantries and other social service programs would have shuttered all around the country were it not for the program. Dioceses across For more than 65 years, the CYO has been helping bring the nation have seen their primary smiles to the community, as seen in this 2017 photo. During source of income – monthly parish COVID-19, the CYO has continued to be a resource for food, education and more, thanks in part to PPP loans. John Blaine collections – decline significantly due to the closure of churches photo during COVID-19. In the Diocese of Trenton, 71 entities received funds. factor in allowing the CYO to retain “The program was a godsend,” said about 40 of our employees on the payroll.” Joseph Manzi, director of administration In addition, thanks to the PPP monies, the CYO was able to transition many of its and finance for St. Leo the Great Parish, preschool staff to remote teaching; provide Lincroft. “Had it not been for the PPP, we educational packets; assist inner-city fami- might have had to halt every one of our lies lacking access to technology by working outreach programs, which would have compounded the devastating impact on with the Trenton Board of Education, and people who needed us for food and finanprovide more than 300 grab-and-go daily lunches to Trenton families in conjunction cial assistance.” St. Leo’s, in addition to its own social with its partners (Capital Area YMCA and Mercer Street Friends). The CYO Bromley concern ministries, works with St. Anthony of Padua Parish’s St. Crispin House as Center – operated in partnership with well as the nonprofit Lunch Break, both Hamilton Township – served double the in Red Bank. When churches closed their number of families at its food pantry. doors in March due to safety concerns, “Also, for the past two months, we have been doing a free lunch program Continued on 51
10 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
HOSTED BY JOE PISCOPO
2020 HONOREES RICHARD J. HUGHES, CATHOLIC CHARITIES, DIOCESE OF TRENTON HUMANITARIAN AWARD Thomas J. Keefe and Judithann C. Keefe LIGHT OF HOPE AWARDS Burlington County: Deacon James L. Casa Mercer County: Mary Jo Herbert Monmouth County: Dr. Jack V. Kirnan Ocean County: Oceanaire Women’s Golf Association
Guardian Angel Benefit of Hope VIRTUAL FUNDRAISER
CORPORATE CITIZEN OF THE YEAR Stark & Stark CLIENT ACHIEVEMENT AWARD Robert
September 30, 6:00–7:30 PM www.CatholicCharitiesTrenton.org/GABOH2020 2020 SPONSORS (at time of printing)
ANGEL OF LIGHT
ANGEL OF HOPE Atlantic Lining Company, Inc. Bank of America Merrill Lynch Drs. Jack and Jean Kirnan NJM Insurance Group Reilly Financial Group
ARCHANGEL The Allied Group Amboy Bank Co-Cathedral of St. Robert Bellarmine The Walter R. Earle Memorial Foundation J.C. Kellogg Foundation OceanFirst Bank Ray Catena Motor Car Corporation Riverview Studios Stark & Stark GUARDIAN ANGEL Bayada Home Health Care Circle BMW Retirement Income Solutions Mr. and Mrs. Robert Tanzola
ANGEL Mr. and Mrs. John J. Costello Jr. Gateway Licensing, LLC Jersey Shore Running Club Law Offices of John F. Marshall New Jersey Natural Gas Occupational Safety Services, Inc. Wells Fargo Bank ANGEL OF PEACE Advanced Coring and Cutting Corporation Michael and Ellen Brogan Causeway Family of Dealerships Church of St. Pius X The Curchin Group, LLC Robert and Maureen Donnelly
Scott and Janet Garley Georgian Court University Peter and Mary Ellen Griffin Hugh and Mary-Ann Guyler Raymond and Gloria Harter Law Offices of Lynda L. Hinkle JSPM, LLC Alice Jones The Kotzas Family Charitable Foundation Robert and Diane Powderly R.P. Mobile Diagnostics, LLC Daniel and Debra Stolbof Damian J. Sylvia
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August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 11
Criticism of relief funding: uninformed, illogical and unjust BY RAYANNE BENNETT Associate Publisher
n early July, the Associated Press published an article about federally issued COVID relief funding that was fairly jaw-dropping in its slant against the Catholic Church. The article, which came off as “uncovering” information about the awarding of COVID loans/grants, seemed to portray the Church in the United States as a massive, money-grabbing monolith, which won a soaring sum through heavy lobbying. To throw in an extra layer of aspersion, the article mentioned the lawsuits that have been paid out by the Church to victims of sexual abuse, insinuating that this was the cause of the Church’s need for relief funding. As we might expect in today’s social media age, particularly with such an incendiary article, the subject became the source of widespread and heated debate between those who wished to criticize the Church and those who sought to defend it. For its part, the Diocese promptly issued a statement decrying the misrepresentation that resulted from the article and affirming the legitimate need for the funding. The statement follows:
Catholic Charities Diocese of Trenton staff and volunteers prepare to deliver food to people in need in mid-March. With an economic downturn during COVID, government funding is critical to help Catholic Church organizations carry out their mission of service. Amalie Hindash photo
The Roman Catholic Diocese of Trenton represents a community of parishes, schools and organizations who together employ some 7,000 individuals, many of whom have been profoundly impacted by the pandemic shutdown and are struggling like everyone else to provide for themselves and their families during these difficult “The Catholic Church times. Our communities is the largest nongratefully participated in the Paycheck Protection governmental supplier Program (PPP) offered of social services.” through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act passed by Congress and signed into law by President Trump on March 27, 2020. As defined by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, PPP “is providing small businesses with the resources they need to maintain their payroll, hire back employees who may have been laid off, and cover applicable overhead.” The Diocese and its local communities were deemed eligible and qualified to receive such government funding for these purposes, and we are using these funds exclusively for these purposes. The suggestion by some in the media that previous legal settlements paid by the Church have anything to do with needing this COVID relief is false and slanderous. On behalf of the national Catholic community, a leader in the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops also issued a statement citing the importance of the funding, not only for the Church but for the communities that it serves and the wider public. Archbishop Paul S. Coakley of Oklahoma City, chairman of the USCCB’s Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, stated, “The Catholic Church is the largest non-governmental supplier of social services in the United States. Each year, our parishes, schools and ministries
Continued on 57
12 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
Issues & Advocacy
ACTION URGED AS U.N. REPORTS RISING HUNGER RATE
CYO Bromley hosts family series on nutrition, gardening A woman learns about healthy eating July 23 during the CYO’s “Farm to Family Program.” Mike Ehrmann photo
BY JOHN SPINELLI Correspondent
ood insecurity is a reality for many residents in the Mercer County area. To offset the need, the CYO Bromley Center, Hamilton, has been operating a “Farm to Family Program,” helping families fight hunger and encouraging home gardening. “This idea came from a partnership with Robert Wood Johnson Barnabas Health and Snipes Farm & Education Center in Morrisville, Pa.,” explained Patrick Hardiman, director of the Bromley Center. “This is a great example of three organizations partnering for a great cause, and the CYO Bromley Center is thankful to RWJ Barnabas and Snipes Farm for choosing us.” The Mercer County Catholic Youth Organization has been working diligently to help as economic challenges affect many in the Trenton during the pandemic. “During COVID 19, many are out of work or have reduced hours, which leads to more difficult times to feed families and do so [healthfully],” Hardiman said. “Our food pantry [use] has increased by over 25 families since mid-March, so this is a great time to run this program.” Hardiman said the program’s objectives are to address food insecurity, help families
For more photos form the ‘Farm to Family Program,’ visit TrentonMonitor. com>Multimedia>Photo Galleries
learn how to eat healthier and offer home gardening tips, even if some families are unable to grow their own food due to living at properties with limited space. The program is operating every Thursday for 16 weeks, from July to October. “During each session when the families come in to pick up their fruits and vegetables, they are taught the notional value of eating fresh produce and perhaps learn some basic home gardening tips on how to grow fresh fruits and vegetables on their own,” he said. “[They] are provided with recipes and live cooking demonstrations utilizing produce from Snipes Farm.” Tina Vaah, a Farm to Family partici-
“Many are out of work or have reduced hours, which leads to more difficult times.” pant, said, “They taught me a lot of healthy tips [such as] the amount of water to drink every day and which foods have a lot of sugar and salt.” Vaah said she doesn’t garden at home but is interested in growing zucchini and spinach. Participant Elizabeth Watson said it will take her time to implement what she learning at home. “But it is better for my health. I really enjoy it and … I am learning a lot.”
VATICAN CITY (CNS) • After the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization projected a drastic increase in hunger and malnutrition due to the coronavirus, a Vatican official is calling on the international community to work together to combat poverty. “Hunger and poverty are related issues,” said Msgr. Fernando Chica Arellano, the Vatican’s permanent observer to the FAO. “The world must invest in peace, solidarity and justice. Otherwise, the world’s problems will continue.” He said the COVID-19 pandemic has not caused new problems but instead “worsened already existing problems.” According to the FAO’s State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2020 report, an estimated 690 million people went hungry in 2019. The coronavirus pandemic, it projected, “may add between 83 million and 132 million people to the total number of undernourished in the world.” “The world is not on track to achieve zero hunger by 2030,” the report said, referring to one of the United Nations’ sustainable development goals. “If recent trends continue, the number of people affected by hunger will surpass 840 million by 2030 or 9.8 percent of the population. This is an alarming scenario, even without taking into account the potential impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.” Msgr. Chica said the report not only highlights the problems with hunger but also malnutrition and accessibility to healthy food sources. He stressed that just policies are needed in the world that side with local producers and guarantee people have access to food markets. He also called on governments to reduce the cost of nutritious food “because without this, diets cannot be healthy” and will lead to an increase in noninfectious diseases, such as obesity and diabetes.
August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 13
Christ to the
World New Vatican instruction details evangelization, cooperation at parish level
s a pastoral leader for the last 25 years at the parish and diocesan levels, and even for a while at the leadership of a national organization, I have become accustomed to the constant flow of A message from Church documents TERRY GINTHER from the Vatican and Diocesan Chancellor and the U.S. Conference Executive Director of of Catholic Bishops. I Pastoral Life and Mission have learned to study them and to let them inspire me. It has been my pleasure to help Catholics in our training programs and at parishes “break them open” to understand the important points, applying them to the “signs of the times” in one area of our ministry or another. In the last month, a “gem” “I hope we can for inspiring the renewal of all be open to the parishes was released by the Vatican Congregation for the invitation of the Holy Clergy, titled “The Pastoral Spirit to be active in Conversion of the Parish Community in the Service of the renewal of our the Evangelizing Mission of the Church.” Recent syndicated parishes.” reporting about this “instruction” seems to have missed the richness of this document, and the impact it is meant to have on my parish, your parish, all parishes. It is well worth your time and interest. CULTURE OF ENCOUNTER Parish communities are called “to go out of themselves,” renewing their methods of ministry and even the way they are organized, “in a spirit of communion and collaboration, of encounter and closeness, of mercy and solicitude for the proclamation of the Gospel (#2).” The instruction reminds us that from small “house” churches in the early days of Christianity to the parishes of our current time, the shape and practices of the parish community have had to 14 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
adapt to changing circumstances, always Msgr. Michael Walsh leads parishioners in striving to sustain a dynamic sharing prayer during an Italian of the Gospel and a closeness to people Festival held in early 2019 in all the dimensions of their lives. This that brought together reform and renewal are necessary and the faith community he must continue in our own time. pastors – the parishes of It should “trouble our consciencSt. James, Pennington, es,” Pope Francis wrote in “Evangelii St. George, Titusville, and Gaudium” (The Joy of the Gospel, #49) that “so many of our brothers and sisters St. Alphonsus, Hopewell. The parishes have been are living without the strength, light linked for four years and consolation born of friendship with through Faith in Our FuJesus Christ, without a community of ture. Mike Ehrmann photo faith to support them, without meaning and a goal in life.” In this age, where more than 25 percent of people in the U.S. identify as “nones” (atheists, agnostics and those without religious affiliation), where mobility and digital culture are pervasive, and active practice among self-identified Catholics is on the wane, it could be tempting to wonder if the parish has become obsolete. This new instruction invites us, instead, to reflect on just how important the parish should be, especially as a community of accompaniment and encounter. These twin concepts, while not new, have been emphasized in recent years in the writings of Pope Francis. We are only beginning to understand their significance for each of us as individuals responsible to share our faith with others, as well as for the “renewal of traditional Parish structures in terms of mission” that this instruction suggests: “The ‘culture of encounter’ is conducive to dialogue, solidarity and openness to others, as it is person-centered. Naturally, a parish must be a place that brings people together and fosters long-term personal relationships, thereby giving people a sense of belonging and being wanted (#25).” “The Parish community is called truly to master the ‘art of Continued on 46
Seminarians focus on self-awareness, community during annual retreat BY MARY STADNYK Associate Editor
long with personal prayer, rest and camaraderie, 13 seminarians from the Diocese spent a major part of their annual retreat reflecting on Hebrews 11:1-3: “Faith is the realization of what is hoped for and evidence of things not seen. Because of it, the ancients were well attested. By faith, we understand that the universe was ordered by the Word of God, so that what is visible came into being through the invisible.” This year’s retreat, held July 20-25 in San Alfonso Retreat House, West End, opened with words of encouragement by Bishop David M. O’Connell, C.M., followed by a series of presentations relevant for men preparing for the priesthood. Father Garry Koch, pastor of St. Benedict Parish, Holmdel, and an associate director for vocations, served as the retreat facilitator. Topics for discussion included: “Knowing Oneself ”; “Developing a Personal Relationship with Jesus Christ”; “Nurturing Virtue Instead of Sin”; “Taking Care of Oneself Physically, Spiritually, Emotionally”; “Pastoral Awareness Of The People On The Periphery,” and “The Habits You Develop As A Seminarian Will Be The Habits You Have As A Priest.” Father Koch said the annual seminarian retreat “provides an opportunity for the men to build a relationship with one another, strengthening those bonds that will serve to
BISHOP AHR ENDOWMENT FUND AWARDS GRANTS TO 11 OUTREACH AGENCIES
assist and sustain them in their priesthood.” “As not all of the men attend the same seminary, they do not have many occasions to get to know or interact with each other,” he said. “So, from a human formation perspective, the retreat allows them to connect.” The retreat, which was hosted by the diocesan Office of Clergy and Consecrated Life, is an op “I also hope portunity for a shared perspecthat they came tive on spiritual growth, developaway aware ments as men of Church and, of their need the in particular, as men of the to grow as Church for the disciples.” Diocese of Trenton, he said. Msgr. Thomas Mullelly, diocesan vicar for clergy and consecrated life and director of seminarians, noted that of the 13 men, three are new to the formation program with the others varying in their years of seminary experience. Father Koch said he hoped the retreat helped the men recognize important aspects about themselves “so that they can be more effective in ministry, and so that they can continue to grow in faith [and] in their relationship with Jesus Christ.” “I also hope that they came away aware of their need to grow as disciples – as evangelizers – as they continue to discern their vocation,” he said.
Eleven agencies around the Diocese were awarded nearly $10,000 in grants, enabling them to continue providing services to those in need through the Bishop Ahr Endowment Fund. The 2020 grant recipients were announced in early July by Msgr. Thomas N. Gervasio, diocesan vicar general. They are: Visitation Community Lunch, Brick ($500); Mercer County CYO ($2,200); Mount Carmel Guild, Trenton ($1,000); New Jersey State Prison ($300); St. Vincent de Paul Societies in Burlington ($400), Tabernacle ($500), Cinnaminson ($1,100), Monmouth Beach ($1,200), and Lakewood ($800); Mercy Center, Asbury Park, ($1,000); and Interfaith Hospitality Network of Ocean County ($1,000). The endowment fund was established in memory of Bishop George W. Ahr, seventh Bishop of Trenton, and provides grants to organizations in the Diocese that aid the vulnerable and marginalized. Mercy Sister Carol Ann Henry, director of Mercy Center, a program that provides services to empower, enrich and educate people facing socio-economic challenges to realize their full potential, said the grant money will be used for its Emergency Services program. “These challenging times have taken a financial toll on everyone,” Sister Carol Ann said, referring to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. “While we regularly receive calls asking for financial support for rent payments and seeking groceries, we are keenly aware of the impact the pandemic is having on the families and individuals Mercy Center serves. “We are deeply grateful for the grant. Because of this support, Mercy Center can continue to be a beacon of hope for our families,” she said. By Mary Stadnyk, Associate Editor
August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 15
Distinguished History IHM sisters with ties to Diocese reflect on community’s 175 years of service
BY MARY STADNYK Associate Editor
faith legacy in the Diocese of Trenton, and beyond, is being celebrated this year. “I count myself blessed to be a member of such a wonderful group of women religious,” said Sister Bernadette Thomas of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, which is marking its 175th anniversary. At one time or another, Sacred Heart Parish and School, Mount Holly; Our Lady of Mount Carmel School, Asbury Park; Incarnation Parish and School, Ewing; Holy Cross High School, Delran, and the diocesan Chancery have been graced with the guidance and leadership of the community. Several members who formerly ministered in the Diocese shared thoughts about their vocation in religious life, work experiences both in the Diocese and beyond, and the rich legacy their community has established in serving God’s people since 1845.
“I feel so blessed to be a member of the IHM congregation.” “I stand on the shoulders of hundreds of strong and deeply spiritual women who have served their fellow human beings no matter their educational backgrounds, color, race, religion, economic status or any other differences,” said Sister Bernadette, who served for 30 years in Holy Cross High School. COMMUNITY’S ROOTS The Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary congregation was founded with an educational mission Nov. 10, 1845, in a log cabin in Monroe, Mich., by Father Louis Florent Gillet, a Redemptorist missionary, and Mother Theresa Maxis Duchemin, a biracial American and
Immaculate Heart of Mary Sister Donna Marie Korba’s work has included serving in Hispanic ministry in Chichicastenango, Guatemala. She credits her time in the Diocese for inspiring that ministry. Courtesy photo founding member of Baltimore’s Oblates of Providence, the first congregation of women religious of color. They have since divided into three congregations: the original in Michigan as well as two in Pennsylvania – Immaculata and Scranton. The sisters continue to minister in Catholic schools and parishes in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Virginia, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Florida, North Carolina, Georgia and Peru. The sisters from the Scranton congregation served in the Diocese of Trenton from the mid-1930s through 2018; their first assignment was Our Lady of Mount Carmel School, Asbury Park, where they served until 1990. In 1943, Trenton’s Bishop William A. Griffin invited the congregation to Sacred Heart Parish, Mount Holly, to begin a regional catechetical center there and nine other locales, including Hainesport, Medford Lakes, Rancocas, Masonville, Jobstown, Pine Grove, Red Lion, Browns Mills and New Lisbon. The success of the catechetical center
16 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
MORE ONLINE Two IHM sisters who are native to the Trenton Diocese share their vocation stories. See TrentonMonitor.com.
promoted the construction of Sacred Heart Regional Elementary School, which the sisters staffed from 1944 until the 2000s. In later years, the Scranton sisters also served in Holy Cross High School, and two went on to serve in diocesan positions. Sister Ann Fulwiler was delegate for religious and vice chancellor, and Sister Joanne Campanini was director of the Office of Migration and Refugee Services. Sisters from the Immaculata community began serving the Diocese in Incarnation School, Ewing, in 1956. Over the years there have been other sisters who served in leadership roles within diocesan administration. The IHM community also has a special connection with Bishop David M. O’Connell, C.M., who was educated by the sisters as a grammar school student in Our Lady
of Grace School, Penndel. In a recent tribute to the IHM Sisters, Bishop O’Connell stated, “The Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary had a profound influence on my early life and my vocation. I will be forever grateful to them.” FULFILLING VOCATIONS Thinking back to 1966 when she entered the Scranton IHMs, Sister Bernadette said she was drawn to the joy and hospitality of the sisters. She also viewed religious life as a way to “thank God for all the many gifts I had received from him.” “I wanted to help others know how much they were loved by God,” said Sister Bernadette, who currently works in the archive office at the IHM Center in Scranton. Like Sister Bernadette, Sister Claudette Naylor has a long history with Holy Cross High School, teaching science there for 23 years. She noted that two years ago, at age 84, she was still in the classroom doing what she loved – teaching science – physics, biology and chemistry. “It has been 65 good years of a prayer life, friends and many classes that I could challenge students in,” said Sister Claudette, who continues to keep busy at the IHM Center reception desk. Sister Donna Marie Korba, who served in the Delran high school from 1988 to 1994, said her desire to serve the elderly and disadvantaged began in her teenage years. She said she was drawn to the IHMs because of their education, dedication to service and spirit of hospitality. Entering the IHM community in Scranton in 1979, Sister Donna said that over the years, “Religious life has taken me to places I never thought of going, and [it] has called me to develop skills and talents that I never would have dreamed I had.” Her service has included a mix of
teaching art and religion and serving in Hispanic ministries in Camden; East Stroudsburg, Pa., and Chichicastenango, Guatemala. She is currently director Immaculate Heart of Mary Sister Mary Persico is shown during her of the Office of Justice, inauguration as president of Marywood University, Scranton, Pa. She Peace and Integrity of had previously ministered in the Trenton Diocese, serving an eightCreation for the IHM year tenure as vice principal and then principal of Holy Cross High community in Scranton. School, Delran. Courtesy photo In addition to teaching art, religion “We lived in the moment from decade and Spanish, she added that her connection to the Latino community also began during to decade, lovingly embraced the people her tenure in Delran, when she was search- we served in every way and celebrated the mission that calls us to be joyful, loving ing for a parish community – ultimately servants to the people we serve,” she said, joining Christ the Redeemer, a Spanadding that her own experience as an IHM ish-speaking community in Mount Holly. had taken her to many continents and the “That is where I fell in love with the far reaches of the United States. Latino community,” she said, adding that Sisters Mary Persico served in Holy she believes that experience Cross High School as vice-principal from laid the foundation for her 1986 to 1987, and then as principal for future missionary work in seven years. Guatemala. “It was one of the highlights of my “I have met wonderful career and a place where I met many wonpeople in all derful teachers, co-administrators, families the ministries, and, of course, students,” she said, noting people who that during her tenure, Burlington Counhave witnessed ty’s only Catholic high school staffed 12 so much of sisters and graduated nearly 3,000 students. God’s goodness,” she said. “I like to think that collectively and in “I feel so blessed to be a concert with all the administrators, teachmember of the IHM congregation. As we ers and staff, those 3,000 were prepared to move toward the future, even with smaller meet the moral, professional, social and numbers, aging community members and spiritual challenges that the next 30 years changes in life, I feel that we have much to would bring,” she said. offer our world still.” Reflecting on her community’s anniCONTINUING LEGACY versary, Sister Mary Persico acknowledged that membership had dropped from the For Sister Mary Persico, who is 1,100 dating back 50 years ago to 300 beginning her fifth year as president of today. However, she emphasized that “our Marywood University, sponsored by her presence, wherever we are, is still strong community in Scranton, it was becoming and vibrant. familiar with the history of the IHM com“Our commitment to people who need munity and the sisters’ support of human us is unwavering. I look back with no rights, social justice and the integrity of regrets and much pride in who we are and creation that inspired her to pursue a what we do,” she said. vocation. August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 17
BEATIFICATION OF FATHER MCGIVNEY TO TAKE PLACE OCT. 31 IN HARTFORD, CONN.
A woman poses for a selfie July 11 in front of Hagia Sophia in Istanbul. CNS photo/Murad Sezer, Reuter
POPE, U.S. BISHOPS SADDENED BY TURKISH COURT RULING ON HAGIA SOPHIA VATICAN CITY • Pope Francis said he was saddened after a Turkish court ruled to revert the iconic Hagia Sophia museum into a mosque. U.S. bishops echoed his statement and urged Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan “to reverse this unnecessary and painful decision and restore Hagia Sophia as a place of prayer and reflection for all peoples.” While commemorating the International Day of the Sea during his Sunday Angelus address July 12, Pope Francis told pilgrims in St. Peter’s Square that “the sea carries me a little farther away in my thoughts: to Istanbul. I think of Hagia Sophia, and I am very saddened,” he said. Erdogan issued a decree to hand over control of Hagia Sophia to the country’s Directorate of Religious Affairs after Turkey’s highest court revoked its status as a museum July 10.
U.S. data group: China hacked computers of Vatican, other Church entities HONG KONG • China has been accused of hacking Vatican computers as well as those in the Diocese of Hong Kong and other Catholic organizations in May. The hacking appears to be an attempt to gain an advantage in talks between the Vatican and China, due to resume as early as this week, about a fresh deal on the appointment of bishops. U.S. data monitoring group Recorded Future and its Insikt Group used sophisticated data analysis tools to uncover the cyber espionage, reported ucanews. com. “From early May 2020, the Vatican and the Catholic Diocese of Hong Kong were among several Catholic Church-related organizations that were targeted by RedDelta, a Chinese-state sponsored threat activity group tracked by Insikt Group,” the Recorded Future report stated. Briefs from Catholic News Service; for full stories, go to TrentonMonitor.com. 18 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
HARTFORD, Conn. • Father Michael McGivney, the founder of the Knights of Columbus, will be beatified during a special Mass Oct. 31 at the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Hartford. On May 27, the Vatican announced that Pope Francis, who met with the board of directors of the Knights of Columbus in February, had signed the decree recognizing Father Michael a miracle McGivney through the intercession of Father McGivney, clearing the way for his beatification. Once he is beatified, he will be given the title “Blessed.” Details of the beatification ceremony have not been released, including what COVID-19 restrictions might still be in place in the fall, such as limiting congregation size, social distancing and the wearing of facial coverings. The Vatican Congregation for Saints’ Causes announced the date for the beatification July 20. The miracle recognized by the Vatican occurred in 2015 and involved a U.S. baby, still in utero: Mikey Schachle, who is now 5. His parents, Dan and Michelle Schachle, of Dickson, Tenn., prayed to Father McGivney to intercede with God to save their son, still in his mother’s womb, who was given no hope of surviving a life-threatening case of fetal hydrops. The Knights have set up a new website for Father McGivney’s sainthood cause: https:// www.fathermcgivney.org.
Pontiff thanks pilgrim with disability who walked Spain’s ‘Camino’
Pope ‘saddened’ by Turkish court ruling to turn Hagia Sophia into mosque
Young people asked to show grandparents, elderly that they care VATICAN CITY • Pope Francis is calling on young people to reach out to their grandparents or the elderly who may be lonely or on their own. “Do not leave them by themselves,” he said. “Use the inventiveness of love, make phone calls, video calls, send messages, listen to them and, where possible, in compliance with health care regulations, go to visit them, too. Send them a hug.” The Pope made his remarks July 26 on the memorial of Sts. Joachim and Anne – Mary’s parents, Jesus’ grandparents and the patron saints of grandparents. Pope Francis said he wanted to mark the day by inviting all young people to make a concrete “gesture of tenderness toward the elderly, especially the loneliest, in their homes and residences, those who have not seen their loved ones for many months” because of rules in place to curb the spread of the coronavirus. In part, because of such regulations in place, he asked young people to be creative and inventive in finding ways to show they care while respecting current directives. Grandparents and the elderly are “your roots” and having a strong bond or connection with one’s roots is important, he said, because “an uprooted tree cannot grow, it does not
MORE FROM POPE FRANCIS ONLINE:
blossom or bear fruit.” The Dicastery for Laity, the Family and Life launched a campaign July 27 after being inspired by Pope Francis’ invitation to reach out safely and creatively to the elderly. The campaign, “The elderly are your grandparents,” encourages young people around the world “to do something that shows kindness and affection for older people who may feel lonely.” It said it has been hearing how people have been finding creative ways to draw the Church community closer to those who are older and lonely, including serenading residents in retirement homes. It asked people to continue to share their efforts and ideas on social media with the hashtag #sendyourhug and the dicastery would repost some of them on their platforms @laityfamilylife. “Our invitation to young people is to reach out to the loneliest elderly people in their neighborhood or parish and send them a hug, according to the request of the Pope, by means of a phone call, a video call or by sending an image. Wherever possible or whenever the health emergency will allow it, we invite young people to make the embrace even more concrete by visiting the elderly in person,” it said.
Pope urges theological reflection on COVID experience
Pope Francis prayed for those suffering from the social and economic consequences of the coronavirus pandemic, which he said showed no signs of ending soon. YouTube screenshot
“The true pilgrim is capable of going at the pace of the slowest person. Jesus is our pilgrim companion … and does not accelerate the pace.”
@PONTIFEX JULY 25, 2020
August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 19
Portland archbishop urges end to violence, return to campaign for justice
CNS photo/Caitlin Ochs, Reuters
World & Nation
BY ED LANGLOIS Catholic News Service PORTLAND, Ore. • As the national spotlight landed on his city and its ongoing protests, Portland Archbishop Alexander K. Sample made Mothers in Portland, Ore., protest racial inequality and police violence July 22. a plea July 24 for citizens to leave violence behind and return to a campaign for racial justice. When protesters breached a fence around the courthouse each During one of his “Chapel Chats,” weekly 30-minute sessions evening, federal police exit the building using tear gas, batons and livestreamed from his Portland home, Archbishop Sample reminded sometimes nonlethal bullets. One nonviolent protester, 26 yearhis community that the memory of George Floyd’s killing was being old Donavan La Bella, suffered a fractured skull July 11 when hit forgotten in the chaotic events that were unfolding in Portland. by a plastic projectile fired by a federal officer. Women dressed in “This all began over the tragic killing of a man” and the racial yellow and wearing bicycle helmets have taken to the streets to inequity the killing revealed, the Archbishop told viewers. “We protect the protesters as a “wall of moms,” later followed by “dads” need to stay focused on the issue that gave rise to this. Let’s stay carrying leaf blowers to deal with tear gas issued by federal officers, focused on what we can do to eradicate this evil.” and then veterans. Even Portland’s mayor, Ted Wheeler, was envelSince Floyd, a Black man, died while in the custody of white oped in tear gas July 22 when he came to address demonstrators. police in Minneapolis May Protests nationwide have sprung up in sympathy of what is 25, protests for racial justice “Violence has happening in Portland. have risen every evening in no place in this Archbishop Sample, who has been an outspoken supporter of downtown Portland. The peaceful protests, has toured the area to see the damage. Graffiti demonstrations typically begin very serious covers the federal courthouse and other downtown buildings. peacefully, but in the late night “What is happening in this city is very sad. Even depressing. It’s hours turn violent in the vicindebate.” a mess, ” the Archbishop said, admitting many people have urged ity of the federal courthouse. him to choose a side in the protests. He has refused, instead saying Portland police initially turned to tear gas, but as the weeks he wants to frame the turmoil in Gospel truths. wore on scaled back. Protests began to taper off. “We should be outraged at injustice,” he said. “Racism remains The energy and violence surged in early July after camouin our society. ... We should be taking action to secure justice for all flage-clad federal officers arrived in the city and began arresting people. ” protesters without identifying themselves. Local officials decried He chided those on any side whose words and acts increase divithe uninvited federal presence. The Trump administration said it is sion, saying that Satan is “dancing with delight” over the disharmony. protecting federal property. “I want us to think calmly, rationally and soundly about these issues,” the Archbishop said. “A Christian tries to bring people together, to bring people into dialogue in order to bring about a greater good.” The Archbishop said he is disturbed by those who say all police are racist. “Yes, there are some bad eggs. And there are some very good servant police who serve us and keep us safe,” he said. The Archbishop offered Catholic social teaching as a road map Las marcas principales que vendemos son for healing. He particularly cited “Open Wide Our Hearts,” the Exmark, Stihl, y RedMax. U.S. Catholic bishops’ 2018 letter on racism. Se vende y se arregla otras marcas de equipo. “We need to act as citizens of this country to fight against the Se puede financiar todo tipo de equipo. evil of racism,” Archbishop Sample said. “And we need to reject NUESTROS TRES ESTABLECIMIENTOS SE ENCUENTRAN EN the violence. Violence has no place in this very serious debate that Joseph Steinert & Company County Line Hardware Lakehurst Lawn Mower must happen.” 26 Old Olden Ave. 707 Bennetts Mills Rd. 10 Union Ave. Langlois is managing editor of the Catholic Sentinel, newspaper of Hamilton, NJ 08610 Jackson, NJ 08527 Lakehurst, NJ 08733 609-587-0246 732-363-6522 732-657-2401 the Archdiocese of Portland. 20 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
World & Nation The casket of the late Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., travels July 26 in a procession from Brown Chapel A.M.E. Church to the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala. The civil rights movement legend who was a colleague of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. died July 17. He was 80. CNS photo/Christopher Aluka Berry, Reuters
LATE CIVIL RIGHTS LEADERS ‘CHANGED COURSE OF HISTORY,’ ARCHBISHOP SAYS
ADVOCATES DEMAND ICE COMPLY WITH ORDER TO RELEASE CHILDREN IN DETENTION WASHINGTON • Franciscan Father Jacek Orzechowski and dozens of immigration advocates rallied outside the Washington headquarters of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement July 27, calling on the agency to release immigrant children being held in detention with their parents. The group also brought 300,000 signatures on a petition demanding the agency release the children, but the building’s security detail would not accept the signatures they tried to deliver. “St. John Paul II reminds us that ‘the family is the sanctuary of life, a domestic church where we receive our formative ideas about truth and goodness, where we learn to be truly human,’” Father Orzechowski said. “Family is at the heart of the culture of life. Separating children from their parents, subjecting them to grave physical and emotional harm is dehumanizing, callous and a part of the culture of death,” said the priest, who currently directs parish community organizing and advocacy efforts at Catholic Charities in the Archdiocese of Washington. He urged ICE to “choose life.”
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Sanctuary at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta. A private funeral was held for Rev. Vivian July 23 at Providence Missionary Baptist Church, also in Atlanta. Both were friends of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and worked alongside him. In their fight against racial injustice, Rev. Vivian and Lewis participated in multiple protests and worked to combat racism in the United States, which included fighting for voting rights. “Two of the greatest voices in American history were silenced this weekend,” Archbishop Hartmayer said after their deaths. “The loss of Rev. C.T. Vivian and Congressman John Lewis are heavy ones to bear, especially as our nation again grapples with the awful sin of systemic racism.”
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ATLANTA • The late Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., and another giant of the civil rights movement, the Rev. Cordy Tindell “C.T.” Vivian, who died the same day as Lewis, “changed the course of history for our nation” because of their civil rights work, said Archbishop Gregory J. Hartmayer of Atlanta. Their work “stands as a testament to what nonviolent protest, fueled by love and a dedication to justice, can do,” he said in a statement released shortly after the July 17 deaths of the congressman and Rev. Vivian. Lewis died after a six-month battle with advanced pancreatic cancer. He was 80. He represented Georgia’s 5th Congressional District from 1987 until his death. Vivian died from natural causes two weeks before his 96th birthday. Both lived in Atlanta at the time of their deaths. Lewis lay in state at the Georgia Capitol July 29, the fifth day of a celebration of his life and legacy. A private funeral took place July 30 in the Horizon
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THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 21
Evicciones afectadas por la pandemia
a pandemia se ha expandido tanto que ya ha llegado a cada rincón de la Diócesis de Trenton, afectando a unas comunidades más que a otras, dejando al desnudo las diferencias sociales y económicas que existen en tales comunidades. Está circulando en las redes sociales una imagen con una frase que dice: “No todos estamos en el mismo barco” aunque todos estemos navegando por la misma ola de la pandemia. Esta pandemia ha causado muchos inconvenientes para inquilinos y arrendatarios, especialmente en las áreas metropolitanas de la Diócesis, creando así grandes desafíos para el gobierno estatal. El señor Mosudi Idowu, director del POR MATEO programa Vivienda GREELEY Para Personas Sin director asociado de comunicaciones Hogar y Respuesta Inmediata Para Alojamiento de Caridades Católicas en la Diócesis de Trenton, informa que la pandemia ha causado muchos problemas, particularmente en la comunidad inmigrante. Las cortes entraron en moratorio cuando New Jersey empezó a urgir la cuarentena por la pandemia en marzo. Solo escuchaban casos de manera virtual. El moratorio, o descanso de protocolos, brindó a los arrendatarios unos meses de alivio si se encontraron atrasados con la renta porque postergaron el proceso de desalojar a personas de sus viviendas. Nadie puede ser expulsado de su casa durante la pandemia del COVID-19. El equipo de Caridades Católicas está preparado para acompañar a quienes se lo necesite para evitar la expulsión, y mejor todavía, proveer apoyo económico a quienes puedan. El señor Idowu, original de Nigeria, lleva 30 años trabajando en Caridades Católicas y dice que lo hace porque se siente llamado a acompañar a las personas
Mosudi Idowu y el equipo de Caridades Católicas de la Diócesis de Trenton están para servir y defender a personas a riesgo de perder su hogar, especialmente durante este tiempo de la pandemia. Foto cortesía de Mosudi Idowu
más necesitadas, en especial todas aquellas que no tienen un lugar donde vivir. Idowu en sus palabras nos dice: “Mi trabajo es ayudarte en lo que más pueda e informarte de las posibilidades existentes, hay mucha información importante sobre la pandemia que la gente debe saber”. Esa información importante de la que habla Mosudi, se refiere a cómo acceder a los recursos destinados a las personas que tienen dificultad para pagar el alquiler y como puede acceder a ella. Si las personas en necesidad tienen uno o varios hijos o que vivan con alguien, no necesariamente un familiar, que es ciudadano americano, eso facilitaría el proceso para recibir un porcentaje de la ayuda económica que
22 REVISTA EL MONITOR Agosto 2020
se ofrece. El programa de apoyo se lleva a cabo en los condados de Burlington, Mercer y Ocean. Dicha ayuda consiste en el pago de hasta tres (3) meses de renta, y dependiendo de la gravedad del caso, esa ayuda puede extenderse hasta por seis (6) meses. A continuación, la lista de los documentos necesarios para solicitar la ayuda: A. Carta del propietario de la casa que lo identifique como dueño. B. Copia del contrato de arrendamiento. C. Formulario de certificación diligenciado por el dueño. En Caridades Católicas de la Diócesis
En el Señor Jesús, caminamos en la verdad
Imagen por Pixabay.com
de Trenton, le pueden brindar ayuda con la aplicación en caso de que se lo necesite. El señor Idowu cuenta que a muchos de los propietarios les gusta participar de este programa porque se van con la seguridad de que recibirán el pago del arriendo sin necesidad de involucrar abogados; de esta manera tanto el propietario como el arrendatario podrán tener un acuerdo, (contrato de pago) por escrito y no solo verbal y “bajo la mesa” como pasa mucho en la comunidad hispana. Como caso particular, Idowu compartió que conoció a una madre de familia, quien tenía un muy buen trabajo en el estado de Pennsylvania, alguien le contó sobre un trabajo en la ciudad de Trenton, al parecer mucho mejor del que tenía, ella lo dejó todo y se mudó para Trenton. A raíz de la pandemia, la compañía para la cual trabajaba cerró, se quedó sin trabajo y por poco pierde su casa. Ahora, gracias al programa de ayuda económica para personas sin vivienda, esta mujer puede diligenciar la aplicación y recibir la ayuda que ofrecemos. Como nota personal, el señor Idowu compartió que: “cada que hablo con estas personas en necesidad, me doy cuenta de que son iguales a mí; somos iguales”. Para más información sobre el programa económico para personas sin vivienda de Caridades Católicas de la Diócesis de Trenton, visite: catholiccharitiestrenton.org/services/ housing-food o llame al 1-800-360-7711.
odos conocemos bien el momento tenso entre Poncio Pilato y Extractos del mensaje del el Señor Jesús cuando Pilato OBISPO DAVID M. demanda “¿qué es la verdad”? después O’CONNELL, C.M. de la revelación del Señor Jesús: “He venido al mundo para atestiguar a la verdad” ( Juan 18: 37-38). Pilato no era el primero de lanzar esa pregunta y el Señor Jesús tampoco era el primer recipiente. “La verdad” ha sido el enfoque del estudio, investigación y debate de por la mayoría de la historia grabada. Los filósofos, teólogos, académicos, estudiantes, personas de fe, personas de ninguna fe se han cuestionado y discutido su significado por los tiempos. En algún momento, simplemente nos toca aceptar una idea o definición de la verdad y seguir adelante. Cuando yo estudiaba la filosofía escolástica en el seminario hace muchos años, recuerdo leer varias definiciones de la verdad. La que tenía más sentido para mí era de San Tomás Aquino en su Summa Teologiae (ST): “la verdad es conformar la mente a lo que existe en la realidad” (ST I.16.1). Hay dos partes de su definición: (1) lo que existe en la realidad – en otras palabras, lo que es; y, (2) conformar la mente, el intelecto, a él. Sin entrar en las reacciones de filósofos por los siglos, ambos por y contra, a esa idea de San Aquino porque a mí me parece tan obviamente correcto. Como cristianos católicos, creemos que no solamente las Sagradas Escrituras sino también la enseñanza y tradición de la Iglesia sean fuentes de la verdad revelada de Dios. Conocer la verdad, confiar en la verdad debe crear una diferencia en nuestras vidas. El Catequismo nos recuerda: En Jesucristo la verdad de Dios se manifestó en plenitud. “Lleno de gracia y de verdad”, él es la “luz del mundo”, la Verdad. … Seguir a Jesús es vivir del “Espíritu de verdad” que el Padre envía en su nombre y que conduce “a la verdad completa”. Jesús enseña a sus discípulos el amor incondicional de la verdad … El hombre busca naturalmente la verdad. Está obligado a honrarla y atestiguarla: “Todos los hombres, conforme a su dignidad, por ser personas [...], se ven impulsados, por su misma naturaleza, a buscar la verdad y, además, tienen la obligación moral de hacerlo, sobre todo con respecto a la verdad religiosa. Están obligados también a adherirse a la verdad una vez que la han conocido y a ordenar toda su vida según sus exigencias” (CIC 2466-2467). Por esto la Iglesia una, santa, católica y apostólica cree lo que cree, profesa lo que profesa, enseña lo que enseña, practica lo que practica; esto se conoce como “el depósito de fe”. Este “depósito de fe” en la Iglesia Católica incluye una declaración comprensiva de verdad(es) además de un equipo de enseñanzas y expectativas válidas basadas en ella con esta meta: guiar a los fieles cristianos católicos por “esa puerta estrecha” de que habla San Pablo. La verdad no es la verdad porque la creemos. La verdad es verdadera, creamos o no. Vivimos en tiempos confusos, tiempos de duda, tiempos de división en casi cada ámbito humano. Yo creo que, de vez en cuando, es importante recordarnos de que haya una verdad mayor que las opiniones y agendas que parecen dividirnos. La verdad es el Señor Jesús y su Evangelio. La misión de nuestra Iglesia es compartir esa verdad con el mundo. Para leer el mensaje del obispo O’Connell por completo, visite PecesdeTrenton.org. Agosto 2020 REVISTA EL MONITOR 23
Agilidad y creatividad en las escuelas católicas
¿Cuál será más seguro y mejor … tener a los niños en las escuelas en septiembre o seguir con el aprendizaje remoto, o tal vez, una combinación de ambas cosas? Es una de las preguntas más centrales para padres de familia, sus hijos y, también, las mismas escuelas estos días. Las escuelas católicas en la Diócesis de Trenton se preparan ahora para las tres situaciones posibles porque los detalles y sugerencias del estado cambian casi diariamente. Además, tienen que reconocer e intentar responder a una variedad tremenda de situaciones diversas de sus familias y también de sus maestros. Menos mal que pueden construir encima de logros y cambios que vivieron el semestre pasado. Para muchas familias, tener a los hijos en casa durante la pandemia no ha sido nada fácil. Encima de tener que mantener el trabajo y la casa, los padres y madres tenían que encargarse de dar mayor seguimiento a sus hijos en cuanto los estudios. Otros perdieron su trabajo y, entonces, proveer las necesidades básicas como la comida y pagar la renta se hicieron prioridades más urgentes. Actualmente en la escuela Nuestra Señora de Monte Carmelo, Asbury Park, hay 192 alumnos matriculados. Es una de dos escuelas en la Diócesis de Trenton que participa en un programa nacional de almuerzos escolares durante el año académico. “Un 92% de nuestros estudiantes reciben el almuerzo gratis o a costo reducido”, compartió la directora, Theresa Craig. “Cuando empezó la cuarentena, empezamos un programa de ‘comida rápida’ dirigida por el personal del comedor, maestros y voluntarios” en que las familias iban a la escuela para recibir comida. “Pero cuando Gobernador Murphy mandó quedarse en casa, muchos dejaron de venir” así que Craig y un equipo dedicado que incluyó al párroco, el padre Miguel Virella, empezó a llevar comida a las casas. Cada dos días, la escuela alistaba
comida suficiente para cada niño con menos de 18 años en el hogar. En dos vanes llenos, el equipo iba a los hogares para entregarla a las familias. “Llevamos comida por los pueblos de la costa” a las familias que la necesitaban, dijo Craig. “Tenemos a familias de Neptune a Eatontown y de Long Branch a Belmar”. Para el padre Virella, los viajes a las casas fueron regalos y una oportunidad de vivir su llamado de ser un sacerdote pastoral. “Por primera vez, tuve chance de visitar a los hogares de los alumnos… llamamos a la casa cuando nos acercamos para que estuvieran afuera esperándonos”, explicó el padre Virella. “Me dio la oportunidad de conocer más de sus personalidades. Yo preguntaría ‘¿cómo te va’ y algunos empezaron a platicar y platicar mientras otros fueron más tímidos. También, visitarlos nos dio chance de desafiar a los alumnos que quizás no se presentaban en las sesiones virtuales”. “Tenemos que alcanzar las necesidades académicas, espirituales, físicas y socioemocionales de todos nuestros estudiantes”, dijo Michael Knowles, presidente de Trenton Catholic Academy (conocida por sus cifras en inglés, TCA), Hamilton. “Es nuestra responsabilidad y deber asegurar que nuestros alumnos tengan todas las herramientas disponibles para tener éxito dentro del salón y con el aprendizaje remoto”. El equipo administrativo de TCA compartió que, para servir mejor a la comunidad hispana, ayudó mucho colaborar con otras organizaciones como FUTURO, un programa patrocinado por LALDEF (Latin American Legal
24 REVISTA EL MONITOR Agosto 2020
Paula Narvaez, valedictoria de la promoción
2020 de Trenton Catholic Academy, grabó su discurso para la graduación virtual y para FOX 29.
Alumnos de quinto grado de TCA participaron en una clase virtual.
Una niña de Nuestra Señora de Monte Carmelo demuestra su arte en la puerta de habitación del motel donde vive con el lema “El odio no tiene lugar aquí”.
Edwing García participa en la graduación de inicial de TCA.
Sophia García participa en una sesión de verano en Nuestra Señora de Monte Carmelo. Muchos alumnos aprovecharon de tutoría y otras oportunidades educativas ofrecidas por sus maestras dedicadas.
La señora Anne Reap, directora de la primaria de Trenton Catholic Academy, saluda a un alumno que pasó a recoger cosas en el último día del año. La tarea para los alumnos durante el verano: ¡Rezar, leer y gozar! Fotos de cortesía
Defense and Education Fund, Inc. Durante la cuarentena, la organización proveyó mentoría y tutoría para ayudar con el aprendizaje de los estudiantes de secundaria. La colaboración ha brindado mucho fruto para la comunidad hispana alrededor de Trenton y seguirá el próximo año. “Algo que nos ayudó mucho (para las familias de Nuestra Señora de Monte Carmelo) fue poder convertir cada Chromebook en un punto de acceso para internet”, compartió Theresa Craig. “Cada familia recibió un Chromebook y, en casas con más de un estudiante, logramos conseguir uno o dos más”. “Hace unos años”, dijo Michael Knowles, “Trenton Catholic Academy ha provisto una computadora por estudiante. Seguiremos usando los fondos disponibles para proveer la tecnología más actualizada para nuestros alumnos y personal”. Las administraciones de ambas escuelas católicas se sintieron preparadas cuando llegó la pandemia y, ahora que otro año escolar se acerque, están aprovechando de esa misma dedicación, amor y servicio, junto a mucha creatividad, para poder dar opciones a sus familias en su decisión. Para Theresa Craig no es una decisión leve, pero: “Me siento de que nuestras familias necesitan tener a sus hijos en la escuela. La mayoría no tiene el lujo de poder trabajar de casa. Estamos activamente elaborando el plan para volver a escuela… y estamos animados tenerlos de nuevo aquí”. “Trenton Catholic Academy fue afortunado de estar preparado para empezar el aprendizaje remoto el 16 de marzo”, dijo Knowles. “Nuestros profesores se familiarizaron rápidamente con Google Classroom y, de inmediato, comenzamos a ofrecer instrucción significante en vivo. Knowles siguió: “Como comunidad escolar, aprendimos mucho durante este tiempo y estamos alistándonos para ver a nuestros alumnos en persona en septiembre, pero estamos preparados para responder a lo que nos dicta la situación. Trenton Catholic Academy está lista para seguir proveyendo una educación católica de calidad a los estudiantes bajo nuestro cuidado”. Agosto 2020 LA REVISTA MONITOR 25
Back to School
Familiar Yet Foreign Back to school plans take shape as COVID-19 data, recommendations shift daily BY EMMALEE ITALIA Contributing Editor
s students return to classes this fall, the coronavirus has undoubtedly changed what that experience will look like, making this annual reunion one of unprecedented transformation.
But one constant remains, according to outgoing diocesan Catholic school superintendent JoAnn Tier – the determination of Catholic schools in the Diocese to move forward both safely and ardently. “Working with so many unknowns, it’s amazing how resilient our administrators are,” Tier said. “They are people of faith. They get the job done; they put their whole self into it, as well as their staff ... I’m continually impressed with their dedication and commitment.” WHAT BACK TO SCHOOL IS LOOKING LIKE The reopening of schools after a several-months shutdown requires planning of
extreme magnitude, with an ever-changing kaleidoscope of state and national data – including viral transmission rates, children’s susceptibility and consequences for mental health – from the Centers for Disease Control, the American Academy of Pediatrics, government health experts and more. Administrators have had to weigh each point of information carefully to assure children will safely receive the superb academic and faith-based education parents have come to expect from Catholic schools. Diocesan staff spoke with school administrators and principals throughout the summer to discuss guidelines for getting schools ready for the upcoming academic year. Often adjusted based on New Jersey’s updated health recommendations, these guidelines have been implemented by schools based on each entity’s unique needs and capacity to meet those criteria with available resources. Parents, too, were A student of Trenton Catholic Academy, Hamilton, works on an assignment on her home computer. Courtesy photo
26 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
provided with surveys over the summer to offer feedback on the options for the year ahead. Survey responses were taken into account alongside best practices for health and safety. “Catholic schools in the Diocese of Trenton will follow the guidance of both the state education and health departments,” said Dr. Mark DeMareo, principal of Holy Cross Academy, Rumson. “Because that guidance changes regularly, the Catholic schools document is not cast in stone. It’s fluid; it’s changing as the situation evolves and as we learn more about COVID-19.” As of The Monitor’s press date, DeMareo plans to open HCA for students in kindergarten through eighth grade on Sept. 1 and 2 with half days, then move to fullday instruction. Preschool four-day and five-day programs will start Sept. 14. “Our goal has been to return to normal operations to the fullest extent permitted by research-based health and safety guidelines,” he noted. “As the COVID-19 situation and guidance continues to change, our plans will also continue to change.” HCA intends to accommodate 15 students per classroom to maintain social distancing – comfortably achieved in the rooms’ oversized layout. An additional teacher will be hired to help split the 24-student fourth grade into two class-
Sister Elizabeth Dalessio, principal of St. Jerome School, West Long Branch, holds up a remote to demonstrate the virtual classroom set up for fourth grade. The school has been updating tech throughout the building, including a 1/1 device program that will allow students to view live classes virtually from home. Courtesy photo
rooms of 12 students each. Upper school students will also be split similarly, and teachers will be encouraged to utilize the library and conference rooms as needed. “For some class changes, teachers, rather than students, will move from room to room,” DeMareo explained. “Morning and afternoon prayers are presented over the intercom rather than during a morning gathering, while Mass may be attended by smaller groups and streamed schoolwide.” St. Mary School, Middletown, has been working on its reopening plan with the help of a reopening committee, composed of a pediatrician, school business manager, director of technology, school and parish administration, facilities coordinator, director of security, school guidance counselor and school nurse. “It is our aim to make the return to school as enjoyable as possible, all while ensuring that the environment … is as safe as possible, and is above the [state] standards,” school staff said. SAFETY MEASURES Looking to utilize in-person, in-classroom instruction as much as possible, schools’ safety measures include temperature checks, enhanced cleaning and sanitization procedures, restrictive visitor policies and hand-washing measures.
“We are coming back full time and staying full time as long as we can,” said Jason Briggs, principal of St. Gregory the Great Academy, Hamilton Square. “We are leveraging outdoor and extra space in September as much we can. As it gets colder that may no longer be possible – but we’re not going to overlook a viable option for fall because it doesn’t work in December.” In Trenton Catholic Academy, Hamilton, school begins Sept. 9 for all pre-K through 12th-grade students, utilizing face masks and maintaining safe distancing in both classrooms and larger shared spaces, such as the gymnasium and cafeteria.
Working with so many unknowns, it’s amazing how resilient our administrators are. “Daily health assessments will be necessary in order to maintain a healthy learning environment for everyone,” said TCA president Michael Knowles. Lunchtime protocols will also look very different from prior years. “Students in the Lower School will eat lunches in their classrooms. The students in the Upper School will eat in the cafeteria or in the gymnasium if needed, and will follow social distancing guidelines,” Knowles explained. School lunches will be offered, he said, in a “grab and go” manner. Students may also bring lunches from home for individual consumption. “As 60 percent of our students receive free or reduced lunch, it is our intention to continue to provide breakfast and lunch through NutriServe Food Management,” he noted. Donovan Catholic High School and St.
Joseph School, Toms River, which share a campus, have the advantage of ample space to spread students across larger rooms. The cafeteria, said Dr. Edward Gere, principal, will accommodate students for six lunch periods. “They’re going to have a real lunch experience, albeit six feet apart. But it’s sitting at tables,” he explained. “Even that simple act is powerful. It’s going to give them more opportunities to interact together.” The outdoor space includes a quadrangle that has been available for lunch in non-pandemic years. “We’ll use it even more for outdoor lunch now, and teachers can use it from time to time for class periods,” Dr. Gere continued. St. Leo the Great School, Lincroft, will adopt many of the same safety and distancing measures. “It is our intent to make the return to school as complete and enjoyable as possible, all while ensuring that the environment for our students and staff is at or above the standards outlined in Gov. Murphy’s guidance,” said Mary Koury, director of admissions and marketing. Focusing particularly on the sanitization aspect, St. Leo the Great campus renovations over the summer have included student bathrooms, which have been updated to include no-touch faucets, toilets, hand dryers and paper towel dispensers. Touchless hand sanitizer dispensers will be installed in each classroom, and the school is the process of designing and installing student desk top safety and security shields to further help accommodate social distancing. “We have had the school and air ducts completely cleaned through an electrostatic disinfecting and sanitizing process; all sanitizing measures have been carried out by certified contractors,” Koury delineated. In addition, a Needlepoint Bipolar Ionization System is being installed, which filters the entire HVAC system, continually cleaning circulating air and eradicating bacteria, viruses and mold. To further reduce viral introduction, Koury said, “students will use the Sani-Stride shoe wash system, which is used in industrial and medical settings to assure the disinfection Continued on 36
August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 27
Back to School
Pandemic offers opportunity of ‘renaissance’ for Catholic education BY EMMALEE ITALIA Contributing Editor
afety and health are of utmost concern for staff and students returning to classrooms across the globe during the pandemic, whether in a public or nonpublic school setting. For Catholic schools, however, the mission of a well-rounded education is two-fold: to provide academic excellence and address a spiritual health that is deeply rooted in Catholic identity. As such, critical attention has been given to Catholic values as schools Life in Christ plan for the upcoming year, with cannot be put participation in liturgy and prayer and service-learning opportunities reon the back maining a priority in both the in-person and remote classroom settings. burner. “When it became clear that we would have to quickly pivot to a home learning environment, our first step was to identify and make explicit what we do daily that makes Catholic education unique,” said Filippini Sister Elizabeth Dalessio, principal of St. Jerome School, West Long Branch. “[We are] guided by a philosophy to foster in students … a continuing growth in love of God and neighbor through our Catholic faith and Christian values.” Dr. Edward Gere, principal of Donovan Catholic High School, Toms River, agreed. “We’re going to begin with the whole person.
We’re not just going to dive into math and science right away. We’re going to be in the moment and recognize the blessings and the struggles we’ve gone through and continue to go through.” At St. Mary School, Middletown, “We emphasize to all the parents that this school and Catholic education is the mission of the Church,” said Father Jeff Kegley, pastor of St. Mary Parish. “Catholic identity is the priority of our school; we’ll make great scientists, lawyers, bankers and plumbers – but our goal is to make great saints.” FAITH CONNECTIONS Community, rich prayer and sacramental life, integration of mind, body and spirit as well as real physical presence are all distinctive elements of Catholic education identified in Vatican documents. So much of the Catholic faith revolves around community, and having that community distanced by various forms of physical COVID-19 protections can have a profound impact on the individual’s psyche and spirit. “Just think about the simple example of a student walking into a classroom and the desks are six feet apart,” Gere pointed out. “That has an effect on a person. And with masks on – it’s a whole different reality.” He explained that Donovan Catholic – and all Catholic schools by that measure – teach the entire person. “We’re sensitive to our students, the needs of a person … that’s where we excel.” Taking lessons from what worked during the spring shutdown, St. Jerome School will aim to repeat many of the activities and formats that strengthened its faith community. “We hope to continue the activities that brought such meaningful connection during the last three months of school, Continued on 38
Bishop David M. O’Connell, C.M., visits St. Gregory the Great Academy, Hamilton Square, during Catholic Schools Week 2020. The new school year during COVID-19 may look different, but Catholic identity in schools will not change. Mike Ehrmann photo
28 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
Back to School
Greetings from new diocesan
Catholic schools superintendent
am so very happy to introduce myself. My name is Vincent de Paul Schmidt, and I am honored to have been named the superintendent of Catholic schools for the Diocese of Trenton by Bishop David M. O’Connell, C.M. My wife, Dana, and our three sons are very happy to have moved to New Jersey. My family has heard there is much to do here, and once the state fully reopens after COVID-19, we will be excited to experience all the Garden State has to offer. From the boardwalks on the beach to farmers’ markets in our community, this seems to be a perfect place to live and raise our family. Friends and colleagues have asked me many times over the past months, “What are you going to change in Trenton?” In reality, my job is not to change anything, but continue to build on the fantastic efforts of former superintendent JoAnn Tier and the team in the diocesan Department of Catholic Schools.
In his greetings as the new Catholic schools superintendent, Dr. Vincent de Paul Schmidt praises the Diocese’s students for the gifts they bring – “and the good works they will be challenged to bring forth daily.” Mike Ehrmann photo Over the last few months, I have come to realize that in the Diocese of Trenton, we have a wide variety of students – from Catholics and non-Catholics, to those of all ethnicities, special needs and varying economic status. All will continue to be embraced for the gifts they bring and the good works they will be challenged to bring forth daily. Having said that, over the course of this school year, you will hear me speak of Pope Francis, a Jesuit, who implored all Catholics to embrace the Ignatian ideal of becoming “men and women
A Message from
VINCENT DE PAUL SCHMIDT
Superintendent of Catholic Schools
for others.” This year, my prayer is for all in the Catholic school community of Trenton to be the embodiment of that ideal. Specifically, we will ask our faculty, students and families to concentrate on the notion of service to all in our community and each other. What better time than in the midst, or hopefully on the cusp, of coming out of a pandemic than to realize the need to help others meet their daily needs? The needs might be spiritual. The Our schools needs might be educational. The needs might be social. The call is have committed now; the call is loud. I am asking teams that all in the educational community to be ready to step up and help are dedicated whenever/wherever you see the need. to leading all To achieve a Catholic edustudents. cation that serves all requires that we teach the faith, that we live Gospel values. Pope Francis focuses on the faith and service. Our parents – you reading this letter – are the principal educators of our children in this faith. Our educational staff work hard every day to support this mission. What better evidence of lived Gospel values than these students here, with their parents, giving of their gifts in service to others? The Catholic schools in this Diocese are poised to take off into unprecedented areas of academic growth and rigor along with an increased focus on Catholic identity. Our schools have committed teams that are dedicated to leading all students to a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ, strong academic achievement, personal growth in the areas of social awareness and social responsibility, and a sense of self-reliance steeped in a set of values that can only come from a mission-driven, faith-filled community such as that found in our programs. Our students are just starting the journey into young adulthood within their faith, and our students are role models that are proof positive of what can be achieved by putting one’s self second. Let us form men and women for others – just as Jesus did throughout his ministry, and what Pope Francis calls us to EVERY DAY. Thank you for accepting this challenge, and thanks for your constant support of our Catholic schools. August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 29
Back to School
Catholic education ‘a gift,’ Holmdel’s new leader says
Kane is a member of St. Benedict Parish, Holmdel. She and her husband of 22 years, Danny, are the parents of three children, Bridget and Cathleen, SJV graduates who are now in college, and Brendan, an SJV junior.
BY JOHN SPINELLI Correspondent
argaret Kane is no stranger to the St. John Vianney High School community. For more than a decade, she has been an educator in the Holmdel school, teaching English, fine arts and social studies, and most recently served as assistant principal. She now looks forward to beginning the 2020-2021 academic year as the school’s principal. “My job is a vocation,” she said. “Being a teacher and an assistant principal in St. John Vianney High School has prepared me for this new role … and I look forward to continuing to learn in the coming ill ic year w m e d a years.” c a 1 02 take the he 2020-2 ls a Kane is a product of Cathip c n new pri d n a olic education, and she says th see three u o m ton, Mon g in rl g u that had a tremendous role in B in v a reins in ng with h lo A . s her own faith formation. e ti n u a Ocean Co tials and n e d “Catholic education, with re c ademic olic edth a C strong ac our shared values and faith, to t en es commitm ti h e c s n fosters a community that lo u c ta e s v e also ha re th ll a you cannot find anywhere u , n m ucatio ool com else,” she said. “It creates ective sch p s re ross ir e to th rparts ac te n u a community that runs o c e their have ls a nities. Lik ip c through generations of n ri p se, these are p re families.” p the Dioce to tly g diligen r in fo rk Kane’s history in o ff w ta s been ulties and c fa , educational leadership ts n e their stud includes having earned a r. a e ool y a new sch bachelor of arts degree in English from St. Francis College, Brooklyn, N.Y., and a master’s degree in school leadership and administration from Georgian Court University, Lakewood. As a principal, she was recognized with a New Jersey Standard Certificate and also holds level three catechetical certification from Notre Dame University, South Bend, Ind.
e m o c l e w new s l a p i c n i r p
30 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
Margaret Kane Kane acknowledged that St. John Vianney – like other schools in the Diocese – has been working to be as ready and adaptable as possible about reopening during COVID-19. “This coming year will present new challenges,” she said. “Yet, I know that the faculty, staff, students and families are prepared. We have invested in improving our technological infrastructure to ensure that our students and parents have a choice in the learning experience. I am excited to continue to work with our faculty as we are training on new programs.”
St. Charles Borromeo familiar school turf for Cynthia Smith BY MARY STADNYK Associate Editor
ynthia Smith is happy to return to familiar territory as the new principal of St. Charles Borromeo School, Cinnaminson. It happens to be where she began her career in education as a teacher more than 30 years ago. “This is a homecoming of sorts,” said Smith, who joined the faculty in 1984,
Back to School and for three years, served as a fifth-grade general education classroom teacher, math coordinator and grade-level liturgy committee chairwoman. “I welcome the opportunity to get to know the faith community of St. Charles Borromeo and working with Father Dan Kirk [parish pastor] and the dedicated faculty and staff to promote the spiritual and educational development of each child,” she said. Smith’s previous educational experience in the Diocese of Trenton includes serving as principal of Our Lady of Perpetual Help School, Maple Shade, from 2018 until June. Prior to that, she taught in Camden public schools for 28 years and for a year in a public school in Collingswood. She also has served as an instructional coach for the New Jersey Education Association, as a teacher mentor and as student teaching supervisor for Rutgers University.
fessional affiliations include the National Catholic Educational Association; National Association for the Education of Young Children, and the National Education Association/New Jersey Education Association/Camden Education Association. Smith and her husband of two years have united as a blended family with four adult children. They are members of St. Teresa of Calcutta Parish, Collingswood. Looking ahead to the school year during the coronavirus pandemic, she said, “Our children’s social and emotional health is as crucial as their academic achievement during these unsettling times. Providing structured, interactive lessons will be a priority if we must provide remote instruction at some point.”
St. Dominic School welcomes longtime educator to new role BY MATT BECKER
Digital and Social Media Coordinator
Cynthia Smith Reflecting on the value of Catholic education, Smith said Catholic school students “become instruments of God’s grace in their own families and communities. “In addition to academics, Catholic schools teach lessons about life, faith and instill moral values,” said Smith, who holds a bachelor of science degree in education from the University of Delaware, Newark, Del., where she majored in elementary education with a minor in psychology. In Rowan University, Glassboro, she pursued graduate work in math, science and technology through an Eisenhower Grant, and from Wilmington University, Wilmington, Del., she earned a master of education in school leadership. Her pro
fter serving 16 years as an educator and assistant principal in St. Dominic School, Brick, Elizabeth Tonkovich is ready to hit the ground running in her new role as principal. “St. Dominic School’s atmosphere is welcoming and inclusive. This community of faith-filled students witnesses daily the modeling of kindness, respect and teamwork. Students meet rigorous academic challenges while being reassured that best effort is truly what our Lord Jesus seeks,” she said. Tonkovich’s appreciation for Catholic education and the community is rooted in her own upbringing. She graduated from St. Benedict School and St. John Vianney High School, both Holmdel, and received a bachelor of science degree in business management from the University of Dayton, Ohio, which is a Catholic institution. “The 16 years in Catholic education formed the person I am today. I often speak with my parents, who worked so hard to provide a Catholic education for
Elizabeth Tonkovich me, of my gratitude for a faith-filled childhood,” she said. She also holds a master of arts degree in teaching from Monmouth University, West Long Branch, and completed an accelerated master’s program from NJPSA/ FEA EXCEL, Monroe. Tonkovich said she is pleased to be so familiar with the culture and community in St. Dominic School, where she started more than a decade ago as a sixth-grade teacher, going on to teach everything from religion to advanced mathematics. She became vice principal in 2011, during which time she led the school’s efforts in receiving AdvancED accreditation (2015) and COGNIA accreditation (2020). She said she was proud to see the school designated as a National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence in 2018. Tonkovich admitted that the school day may look a bit different in the new academic year due to COVID-19. It’s her hope, however, that “with the guidance of our Lord, I will bring the school community through this unprecedented time of uncertainty.” She said she is humbled by the opportunity to lead St. Dominic School and grateful for the dedicated teachers and staff, and that her main focus will be on providing students with a high-quality Catholic education. “Answers to important questions cannot be found in the secular world. We must go back to the foundation of our faith and therein find the answers,” she said, reiterating that her goal is “to offer the opportunity for children, beginning at a young age, to be a part of an environment, wherein faith is the rock that each life is built upon, is nothing short of a gift.”
August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 31
Back to School
Families stay positive as they keep close eye on school reopening plans BY ROSE O’CONNOR Correspondent
s Catholic schools around the Diocese continue to plan for the 2020-2021 academic year, parents are faced with a lengthy list of questions, considerations and concerns about what to expect and how best to prepare for the return to school – whether in person or online. Cara Lynch is the mother of two daughters in St. Paul School, Burlington. She served on her school’s task force to help determine back-to-class readiness, evaluating issues such as health, safety, technology, needed equipment and transportation. Each Catholic school in the Diocese of Trenton was asked to create a task force consisting of principals, staff, parents and others and work with the diocesan Department of Catholic Schools.
“Knowing how much time has been spent addressing the many concerns that have been raised provides me with a great level of comfort leading up to the new school year,” Lynch said. “I am hopeful that the students will be able to return to in-person teaching and continue learning with their classmates in a stable environment that they enjoy. “I also hope that parents understand that patience, positivity and flexibility will be the best way for all of us to get through whatever challenges we will be facing in the coming months,” she said. Meredith Socha, who has three children in St. Ann School and a daughter entering Notre Dame High School, all in Lawrenceville, said that while the school year may look different than years past, she hopes it won’t “feel different for our kids … and that the new safety protocols and procedures won’t change the school’s
Students in St. Paul School, Burlington, demonstrate how they are one community even during virtual learning. Courtesy photo 32 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
community. Kids are so resilient and adaptable.” MaryBeth Green remains upbeat that her two children, Bobby, a seventh-grader, and Jayson, a third-grader, can return in person to St. Mary Academy, Manahawkin. “I am hopeful that the students can settle into a new routine and maintain focus on their schoolwork in the supportive environment.” BUSING CHALLENGES Among parents’ top concerns in the upcoming year: maintaining social distancing on school buses. “This is part of the transition back to school that I do think about often, as I do not have any alternative transportation options at this time,” said Lucy Tomczynski, whose daughter, Emma, is a junior in Camden Catholic High School, Cherry Hill, and her son, Sean, an eighth-grader in St. Paul School. Barbara Vidal shared similar apprehensions. Her two daughters, Emma and Gracie, attend Donovan Catholic High School, Toms River, with another daughter and son, Hailey and Charlie, attending the Manahawkin school. “I have mixed emotions about transportation,” she said. “My older daughters need to take the bus to school, since Donovan Catholic is 20 to 25 minutes from our house, and I’m concerned that social distancing may not be able to be maintained on a bus. “ Green agreed. “Students of this age won’t always have the self-control to stay apart from their friends. I am concerned about the risk of exposure from other students and staff and the exponential risk of any one person coming to school when they are positive and don’t know it.” Added Socha, “I think it’s going to take a lot of reminders both from us as parents and from [school] staff to remind the kids that they can’t hug their friends and teachers.”
FAITH IN SCHOOLS Returning to school will bring about new rules, as parents are well aware. “We are already preparing the children for the new protocols by mask wearing, talking about the safety protocols, destigmatizing the protocols themselves and giving them the reasoning,” Green said. “We talk about the pros and cons of being in groups, and we are very conservative with exposure.” Lynch expressed similar sentiments. “My husband and I have been discussing the pandemic in the simplest of terms [with their children] while continuing to practice good hygiene and working toward getting them used to wearing a face mask for an extended period of time.” While there are a number of challenges, parents continue to have faith in their Catholic schools. “Our school’s ability to maintain social distancing, clean surfaces and stay vigilant to changing conditions provides a much-needed sense of relief,” Lynch said of St. Paul School. Vidal believes the Catholic schools her four children attend will do their best to keep everyone safe. “I believe that in-school learning cannot adequately be replaced by remote learning, especially for my younger children,” she said. “It is my firm belief that students need their teachers in person to guide, teach and nurture them into who God created them to be,” Vidal said. “We believe Catholic schools educate the whole child academically, socially, emotionally and spiritually, keeping God at the center of who they are and what they do.”
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August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 33
Back to School
COVID funding to help bridge Courtesy photo
‘digital divide’ BY EMMALEE ITALIA Contributing Editor
or students across the nation, the pandemic has highlighted what has been dubbed the “digital divide” – the technology gap experienced by those who either do not have access to the internet from home or do not have a device with which to connect to attend virtual classes. To that end, N.J. Gov. Phil Murphy and his administration have been working to allocate federal funding to both public and nonpublic schools, as plans go forward for reopening both in-person and virtual classrooms. Public school grants will come from the state’s federal If I can get Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) money from the Act Elementary and Secondstate to help cover ary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) funds. After those technology, then funds have been exhausted, Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) the rest of the monies will be redirected, with school budget is $6 million available for nonpublic schools. less tight. “One thing the 2019-2020 school year taught us is just how resilient and innovative our students and educators can be, particularly in times of crisis,” Gov. Murphy said. “By taking these steps to close the digital divide and equip students in need with personal device access and internet connectivity, we can ensure that students continue to succeed in these unprecedented times.” An estimated 230,000 students statewide were impacted by the digital divide when schools were closed to in-person instruc-
34 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
tion in March. Among them were students of Asbury Park’s Our Lady of Mount Carmel School. Though the school was able to distribute Chromebooks, one per family if needed, there was still a problem of connectivity. “We began to get calls from parents saying, ‘I don’t have any more data,’” principal Theresa Craig said. A local internet company stepped in to provide free-of-charge mobile hotspot service, allowing each computer to serve as a hotspot. Now, the school is working to secure more computers, especially aging devices in need of replacement. “We ordered 75 Chromebooks in November … but because of COVID-19, imports were shut down, so they never arrived,” Craig said. The school has placed an additional order for 100 Chromebooks with a national store chain. Having funds available from the state for devices both in and out of the classroom will ultimately allow schools some budgetary breathing room. “If I can get money from the state to help cover technology, then the rest of the school budget is less tight for things like sanitizing and PPE [personal protective equipment],” Craig noted. Addressing the need for the Coronavirus Relief Fund monies, state Sen. Teresa Ruiz, chair of the Senate Education Committee, said, “There are thousands of kids around the state who, after three months of virtual instruction, still do not have access to the internet or a tablet, preventing them from connecting with their teachers or interacting with materials. “This use of funding, to connect every single New Jersey student to online learning by the time school starts in the fall, is critical to preventing further learning loss and ensuring we are prepared for what is to come in September and throughout the remainder of the school year.”
BACK TO SCHOOL & BACK TO OUR COMMUNITY
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Virtual Open House Coming in October Learn more about our school community at: 601 Lawrence Road, Lawrenceville, NJ 08648
August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 35
Back to School
Schools adjust to virus mitigation Continued from 27
of shoes coming into the building.” St. Gregory the Great Academy is also looking to airflow measures as well as ondesk polyethylene guards. “In order to promote better ventilation, we are retrofitting classroom windows for through-window vent fans,” said Briggs. “We’re also ordering desk guards for the lower grades. The reality is that you can get fifth-graders and up to wear masks [consistently], but younger kids are going to fiddle with the mask and move it. If they’re working at their desk and have a desk guard, it’s not as big a deal if they slide the mask aside.” St. Mary School has also renovated bathrooms with all no-touch amenities, added hand sanitizer dispensers throughout the school, and will limit student movement and contact.
Our goal has been to return to normal operations to the fullest extent permitted. “We have an arrangement with Flynn O’Hara to incorporate SMS inspired face mask/gaiters for student use – easy to pull up when needed,” the school assured parents. “All students will be wearing face coverings when social distancing is not possible.” In West Long Branch, administrators and parents at St. Jerome School have been instrumental in assuring best practices for following health guidelines. “We are fortunate to have parents who are clinicians and physicians at Hackensack Meridian Health, guiding our efforts and helping us to establish protocols,” said Filippini Sister Elizabeth Dalessio, principal. “They are graciously giving their time and expertise to develop policies, including guidance around masking, temperature checks, sanitizing and lunchtime protocols … measures include keeping children
St. Mary School, Middletown, has been working on its reopening plans with the help of a reopening committee. Plans include keeping desks six feet apart. Courtesy photo
in their classrooms, requiring all persons entering building to wear masks and have temperature taken. Children will eat in classrooms and we will schedule as much outside time as possible for P.E. and recess.” VIRTUAL READINESS Because complete home instruction was required a short few months ago, Catholic schools around the Diocese have moved with energy to adjust to the virtual classroom. Recognizing the possibility that shelterin-place restrictions may again be indicated by the state if cases balloon, teachers have spent extra time familiarizing themselves with the various online platforms that played such a critical role in the continuation of the 2019-2020 academic year. Various scenarios have been planned, with some schools offering a hybrid week of instruction divided between school classrooms and at-home virtual access, and preparing for total online instruction should the need arise or a family situation require it. Donovan Catholic High School, in coordination with St. Joseph School, is working on ironing out the options alphabetically by last name to keep families on the same schedule cross-campus. “Option one is a hybrid model, with partial at-home and partial in-classroom instruction; another option is to be home virtually 100 percent of the time,” explained Dr. Gere. “When we surveyed parents
36 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
initially, about 30 percent said they were interested in virtual instruction.” Anticipating that need, Donovan Catholic has elected to set up cameras in each classroom for real-time education – with an adjustment in teaching structure. “Things will be a bit different in terms of lesson plans,” Dr. Gere said. “You might see review at the beginning of class followed by seat work, and maybe that’s when the teacher uses Google Meets or speaks with students individually at home and those present [in turn], so there’s some real-time interaction… It does offer them a little bit richer experience than just the Zoom format. But we’re preparing to do that too if needed.” Trenton Catholic Academy will offer full-time online learning as a choice for families through Google Classroom, as well as a separate and full online option for grades six through 12 through the online learning platform Catholic Virtual. Speaking to the experience of spring 2020, Knowles said, “While COVID-19 may have closed our physical school building, our administration, staff and coaches were busy making sure our students had all the tools they needed to succeed.” That included the use of social media for leading school community daily prayer and virtual celebrations like the May Crowning and helping families secure wifi access. Briggs said that St. Gregory the Great Continued on 40
Safety. Our facilities, our values, and our community will ensure your daughter has a safe environment to become all she can be.
For over 200 years, Sacred Heart education has been educating women through challenging times, and as the stewards of this tradition, we are committed to developing the confident and courageous leaders the world needs now more than ever.
Resources. With our expert faculty who know girls well, extensive investments in technology, and a robust financial aid program, we have demonstrated our leadership in remote, in-person, and hybrid education. Commitment. We will be here in September no matter what the shape of the pandemic recovery is.
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August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 37
Back to School
Catholic schools’ mission remains: forming the whole person Continued from 28
including daily Rosary and Eucharistic Adoration,” Sister Elizabeth explained. “We will continue to pray for health care workers and all professions on the front lines. We will celebrate activities, such as class liturgies and community feast day, that unite us with the Religious Teachers Filippini in Morristown and Rome. We also hope to continue connecting with a truly extended family, through a pen pal program with students from Italy and Brazil who came to us on Facebook.” St. Mary School will continue its community outreach and schoolwide Masses in its large church, said Father Kegley, who noted that the principal, Craig Palmer, “really keeps the minds of the kids focused on the fact that we’re called to serve others” with food drives and fundraising for causes throughout the year. The goal overarching academics is “to make it as normal as possible … life in Christ cannot be put on the back burner.” NEW REALITY, SAME MISSION Donovan Catholic and St. Joseph School, which share a campus, will aim for reserving approximately one day a week for community-building for a particular grade. “We might have it be a retreat day, and we could have a class
Mass in the church if the numbers are allowed at the time,” Gere explained. Students could be allowed time to reflect on how the past several months affected them, and how they are doing now, he noted. “Some students coming back might feel nervous; I remember that feeling when going back to the store for the first time,” he continued. “We also have to think about our teachers – they’re putting themselves on the line,” Gere said. “We’re going to take care of the physical, mental and spiritual health of our students and teachers before education.” Sister Elizabeth said the coronavirus will never change the mission of St. Jerome School. “With the support of our community and the Diocese, we will continue to learn, love, and connect as one family, deeply rooted in our Catholic identity.” Father Kegley agreed. “I really believe with all the craziness in the world right now, this should be a renaissance for Catholic education. We need institutions like Catholic schools that can teach the Gospel message – Jesus’ message of love, mercy and forgiveness. I believe it’s an opportunity for our mission to shine. “The focus of Catholic education … is not just to teach, but to form,” he continued. “Children need to know they are not bystanders, but active participants in the Gospel.”
MATER DEI PREP continues to soar despite the challenges presented by COVID-19. We are moving into the Fall of 2020 focused on continuing to deliver our individualized programs with small class sizes. Our committed faculty and staff ensure all our students are engaged in the full high school experience. We provide a safe, independent Catholic school learning environment that nurtures while challenging all our students to reach their full academic potential.
Due to an increased interest in attending MATER DEI PREP during COVID-19, we are continuing to accept applications for the Freshmen Class of 2024 and transfer students in grades 10-12.
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38 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
MATER DEI PREP students seamlessly adapted to our exceptional Virtual Learning Program during COVID-19. We provided live Zoom classes four days a week from 8am- 2:30pm with one-on-one sessions with faculty on Fridays.
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As we begin this new school year, Catholic schools in the Diocese of Trenton are committed to: The safety and health of our students, faculty and staff. Living God’s message of love, understanding, and diversity. Delivering solid, faith-based curriculum in a number of innovative ways. Applications are still being accepted for the 2020-21 school year.
C a t h o l i c S c h o o l s
Our Lady of Good Counsel School • Moorestown Sacred Heart School • Mount Holly St. Charles Borromeo School • Cinnaminson St. Joan of Arc School • Marlton St. Mary of the Lakes School • Medford St. Paul School • Burlington
Our Lady of Sorrows School • Mercerville St. Ann School • Lawrenceville St. Gregory the Great Academy • Hamliton Square St. Paul School • Princeton
St. Raphael School • Hamilton Trenton Catholic Academy Lower School • Hamilton Notre Dame High School • Lawrenceville Trenton Catholic Academy Upper School • Hamilton
Holy Cross Academy • Rumson Mother Seton Academy • Howell Our Lady of Mount Carmel School • Asbury Park St. Benedict School • Holmdel St. Catharine School • Spring Lake St. James School • Red Bank St. Jerome School • West Long Branch
St. Leo the Great School • Lincroft St. Mary School • Middletown St. Rose School • Belmar St. Rose of Lima School • Freehold Red Bank Catholic High School • Red Bank St. John Vianney High School • Holmdel St. Rose High School • Belmar
St. Joseph School • Toms River St. Dominic School • Brick St. Mary Academy • Manahawkin St. Peter School • Pt. Pleasant Beach Donovan Catholic High School • Toms River
HAVE it ALL!
FA I T H • A C A D E M I C E XC E L L E N C E • AT H L E T I C S • S E R V I C E • C O M M U N I T Y
REACH OUT to the Catholic school near you to learn more… GO TO dioceseoftrenton.org/schoolfinder OR CatholicSchoolsHaveItAll.org
August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 39
Back to School
COVID challenges Continued from 36
Academy’s virtual instruction solution will be “simple but effective. Teachers will use a Chromebook with the camera focused on the board, and virtual students can sign in to view class.” Chromebooks have been assigned to grades five through eight for years, Briggs continued. “Third and fourth grade will have Chromebooks that will remain at school unless we go to full remote instruction.” Devices for younger grades will be on loan from the school on an as-needed basis. St. Jerome School has been at the forefront of tech updating since the pandemic began. “With the support of the entire St. Jerome community, we have been able to outfit each classroom with a camera and large screen television to allow students to attend school in person or virtually,” Sister Elizabeth said. “We have also created a oneto-one device program, which will enable
us to hold class in real time and, using Microsoft teams, interact with each other as if we are all in the classroom.” TRANSPORTATION ISSUES For most school districts, busing has not yet been decided for public school students, which has left nonpublic schools awaiting word on availability. Contributing to the challenge of finding busing companies willing to take Catholic school student routes – with already fewer students in a wider-spread area – are the distancing protocols required by the pandemic. “A school bus accommodates 40 kids,” which must be reduced by half to keep children spaced apart, Tier pointed out. “If there are only 20 kids now scheduled on the route, there need to be multiple routes. Masks are a possible solution, but it depends on what each district is deciding; they are still figuring it out.” As in non-COVID-19 years, state aid in lieu of transportation will go to families on behalf of each student who is unable to be accommodated with a bus seat, in accor-
dance with the money allocated for nonpublic school transportation in Gov. Murphy’s budget, which is due in September. Monmouth and Ocean educational services sent a letter to school principals in Toms River, said Tier, indicating bus assignments “could be a rocky experience, and not to count on transportation … only 20 routes out of 300 have been bid on by bus companies. We think this could be a domino effect across the state.” Bidding on busing routes continued through July. TCA has learned that busing will be available from Hamilton, but will need to look to courtesy busing – wherein parents pool resources to pay for a private bus – that has supplemented busing for students in Trenton, Ewing and Burlington in prior years. Transportation is still an evolving situation for Donovan Catholic as well. “We still have not received a definitive answer from the district,” said Dr. Gere. “It’s in transition. We do have some of our own buses, and those will continue – but it doesn’t cover all students. Having buses is expensive, and bus drivers are hard to come by.”
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40 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
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Following Jesus AUG. 2 THE LORD TEACHES ABOUT BEING OF SERVICE Readings for the 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time: Is 55:1-3; ROM 8:35, 37-39; MT 14:13-21
he assassination of John the Baptist clearly impacts Jesus and his work and ministry. Their lives were deeply linked together and their missions intertwined. Upon hearing of the news of John’s death, and as he begins more and more to anticipate and speak about his own Passion and Death, Jesus withdraws with his disciples for a time of prayer and retreat. However, by this time in his ministry, Jesus is attracting larger crowds. There are many – more than 5,000 men, women, and children – who seek him out in that deserted place wanting to listen to him and find healing of their sins and afflictions. The 12 Apostles, and to a much lesser extent even Jesus himself, have grown weary of the pressure and the demands of the crowds. After interrupting their time of prayer, the Apostles are ready to send the people away so that they can get some food. Jesus, of course, is not ready to dismiss the crowds and offers the seemingly crazy idea that the Apostles should feed the assembled crowd. “Jesus said to them, ‘There is no need for them to go away; give them some food yourselves.’ But they said to him, ‘Five loaves and two fish are all we have here.’” The Apostles have dismissed any further idea of feeding the crowd until Jesus takes the meager amount of food, blesses it and distributes it to the crowd to eat. There are 12 wicker baskets of food left over once the crowd has had its fill. AUG. 9 GOD MAKES HIMSELF KNOWN IN SIMPLE WAYS Readings for the 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time: 1KGS 19:9A, 11-13A; ROM 9:1-5; MT 14:22-33
t one point in life or another, and often in ways which are indescribable, God makes himself known to each
and every person. It would appear, at least on the surface, however, that many, if not most people, either miss the opportunity to respond to the call or ignore it all together. It is interesting for those whom the extraordinary gift of a private revelation has been gifted, such as St. Bernadette, St. Juan Diego or the children at Fatima. They too, at first, misunderstand their mysterious and miraculous encounter with the Lord. We need to have hearts disposed to seeking and experiencing the Lord before we can come to apprehend the encounter itself. In one of the most poignant and awe-inspiring moments in the Scriptures, Elijah the prophet is summoned by God to flee to Mount Horeb on the Sinai peninsula, close to the mountain where Moses encountered the burning bush. Knowing that he was about to encounter the Lord, Elijah discovers that God was to be found not in the majestic but in the simple wisp of the wind blowing past his ear. One might have thought, as Elijah expected, that God would be found in a mighty wind, or a great cloud, or clap of thunder and lightning, but instead it is in a zephyr where he finds God. The disciples traveled with Jesus for quite a while before the events of the Gospel for this weekend unfolded. Gradually they realize that he is more than a prophet or more than the expected messiah; he is indeed the very incarnation of God. AUG. 16 THE LORD SEEKS THOSE WHO SEEK HIM FIRST Readings for the 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time: IS 56: 6-7; ROM 11:13-15, 29-32; MT 15:21-28
or reasons unclear in the context of the Gospel, Jesus seems to be leaving the territory of Israel and heading to the Gentile districts of Tyre and Sidon. At some point in the journey Jesus and his disciples are confronted by a Canaanite woman whose daughter is afflicted by demons. While this might seem to be a
42 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
This stained glass depiction of Jesus feeding 5,000 people reflects the Gospel reading for Aug. 2, the 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time. Stock photo
random event, there is no question that this encounter is not a coincidence. There are several examples in the Old Testament – perhaps the Syrian General Naaman the most notable – of Gentiles coming to Israel to seek the Lord. Intuitively drawn by the natural knowledge of the power of the God of Israel, they sought more than what their own religious practices could conceivably offer. The encounter between Jesus and this anonymous woman provides a slightly different perspective. While Matthew isn’t clear exactly where the encounter takes place, we know that Jesus is heading toward the region of Tyre and Sidon. This woman also seems to be traveling a distance to find Jesus. They seem to encounter each other along the way. Hers is a story of faith. She addresses Jesus in specific Jewish terms – “Son of David.” She has also realized that it is Jesus who can provide the relief and healing her daughter needs.
TO READ expanded versions of Father Koch’s columns or TO LISTEN to Podcast messages on Catching The Word, visit TrentonMonitor.com
Yes, Jesus challenges her and seems to be dismissive of her needs. This can seem to be a bit off-putting, but Jesus – as he often does – draws her into persistence. Indeed, this woman has one of the best responses to Jesus in the Gospels – and she receives the healing she seeks. AUG. 23 THE CHURCH ALWAYS PROCLAIMS JESUS CHRIST Readings for the 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time: IS 22:19-23; ROM 11:33-36; MT 16:1320
wo-hundred sixty-six men have served as Bishop of Rome since St. Peter arrived there in the middle of the first century. While 83 have been canonized saints, there are many others whose lives are more scandalous or at least open to suspicion. The Church has thrived through periods of triumphant glory and stayed strong during times of darkness, war, persecution and pestilence. While many have looked forward to her demise, and others
still anticipate it either with glee or trepidation, the fact remains that the Church must be more than a human institution. No other institution has endured as long. Jesus promised Peter, as he announced that he was giving to him the “keys to the kingdom of heaven,” that Satan would never prevail against the Church. This promise does not secure the Church from sin, or protect her from the vulgarity of sinful men and women lurking in her walls, teaching in her schools and wreaking havoc amongst the faithful. But is does ensure that the Church will stand secure upon the shoulders of the Apostles. When we look at the conversation that led Jesus to give Simon the nickname “Peter” (“the Rock”), it rests upon Simon’s testimony and profession of faith: “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” On his own, Peter could not have responded that way. Perhaps coming to understand Jesus as the “messiah” was discernable through reason. This assertion must have been shocking to Simon as he said it, and awkward for the other disciples to listen to as well. The Church is the Church – standing steadfast amidst the storms of the world and her own internal struggles – because of the mission first attested to by Peter and revealed through the Holy Spirit: we proclaim Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God. AUG. 30 THE DISCIPLES ARE CHALLENGED TO FOLLOW JESUS TO THE CROSS Readings for the 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time: JER 20:7-9; ROM 12:1-2; MT 16:21-27
hile we often reflect on the relationship between Jesus and his Disciples, the expectation is that theirs was a deeper personal relationship as well. While I wouldn’t go so far as to say that they considered Jesus to be their equal, the Disciples shared their lives together, traveled together and spent virtually every day together for the entire length of Jesus’ ministry. We could also expect that some of them were closer than others. Yes, there were some natural relationships: Peter and Andrew were brothers, as were James and John. As the Disciples grew in their relation-
ship with Jesus and as they begin to understand more about who he is, they had also to begin to wonder why Jesus had chosen each of them with their own weaknesses and sins. It would make sense that in being forced to address the question from Jesus as to who he is, they would have to ponder that same question about themselves. “Who am I that the Lord would choose me?” When considering the personal relationship and this level of reflection between Jesus and his Disciples, then, Peter’s response to Jesus in today’s Gospel can make more sense. Jesus now tells them that they will go to Jerusalem and there he will be tortured and “We need killed. This must strike them on to have a visceral and hearts deeply personal level. Peter disposed to for one cannot seeking and imagine that for Jesus. He experiencing obviously loves Jesus, has comthe Lord.” mitted himself to Jesus and to the mission and professed his belief in Jesus as Messiah and Son of God. How then could he wish for his master, his messiah, the very Son of God, to suffer and die? No one would wish this for a master, mentor or friend. At the same time, and on a more personal level, Jesus, in speaking of his own Passion and Death, would suggest to Peter and to the others that they, too, could be subject to the same fate. Jesus puts the Disciples now at a crossroad: “Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his Cross, and follow me.” This is where the Disciples are forced to take their commitment to follow Jesus another step. Certainly Peter and most of the others made the commitment to walk ahead. We also might wonder if it is here that Judas began to ponder a different response to Jesus. Father Garry Koch is pastor of St. Benedict Parish, Holmdel.
August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 43
Existence of purgatory; Did Mary die, and where? I was raised a devout Catholic and have a great interest in works of theology, such as those by Thomas Aquinas. But my mother, who is also a Catholic, doesn’t believe in purgatory. She thinks that God loves us so much that there wouldn’t be a reason for purgatory. Is there any way I can try to prove it to her? (Charlotte, Mich.)
Many Protestants do not believe in purgatory, claiming that this teaching denies the sufficiency of Christ’s sacrifice for our sins. (Some point, too, to the fact that the word “purgatory” exists nowhere in the Bible, but that argument seems to me to lack force – the words “Trinity” and “Incarnation” do not appear either.) “The Fathers of Actually, a belief in a postmortem purification predates the Church allude Christianity. Shortly before the advent of Christ, in the Old Testo the standard tament Book of Second Maccapractice of praying bees (12:39-46), Judas Maccabeus was collecting the bodies for the dead.” of fallen comrades when he noticed that some of them had been wearing pagan amulets; so he arranged for an expiatory sacrifice and “made atonement for the dead that they might be absolved from their sin.” The implication, of course, is that some sins can be forgiven in the world to come. That implication is confirmed in the Gospel of Matthew (12:32), where Jesus says, “Whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.” The Fathers of the Church allude to the standard practice of praying for the dead. In the middle of the third century, St. Cyprian of Carthage told us that prayers for the departed had been said in all the Churches since the time of the apostles. This belief is codified in the Catechism of the Catholic
Deacon John Clymore
God bless you for your devoted 25 years of service as Deacon, and for the many ways you serve our parish.
Blessings Blessings on your 25th Anniversary! Anniversary!
Rev. Garry Garry Koch, Koch, Pastor Pastor Rev. Rev. John.Michael Patilla, Rev. John.Michael Patilla, Parochial Vicar, Parochial Vicar, Deacons, Staff, Staff, Faculty, Faculty, and and Deacons, Parishioners of Parishioners of HOLMDEL
44 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
QUESTION CORNER Father Kenneth Doyle Catholic News Service
Church: “All who die in God’s grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven. The Church gives the name ‘Purgatory’ to this final purification of the elect” (No. 1030-1031). What we don’t know is the exact nature of that purification, how many people undergo it or whether it might even be instantaneous. In 1999, I traveled to the Holy Land, and one of our stops was at the Basilica of the Dormition. We were told that this is the site where the Virgin Mary died. Some years later, I visited Ephesus in Turkey and took a cab out to a little home where, we were told, Mary had lived and died. In 1967, St. Paul VI visited there, and in 1979 St. John Paul II celebrated Mass there. My question is this: On a matter of such historical importance, why hasn’t the Church made a decision on the correct place where Mary died? (Ga.)
First, I should answer a question you didn’t even ask: Did Mary die, as we know death? That question has prompted theological speculation for centuries, and the Church has never answered it in a definitive way. When, in 1950, Pope Pius XII solemnly defined the dogma of the Assumption, he said “the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.” That seems to leave open the question of whether Mary died first. Some theologians feel that, since death is a consequence of sin, Mary would not have had to die. But others speculate that, since Jesus himself chose to die, wouldn’t it be fitting for his mother to have shared the same fate? Moving on to the question you did ask – where Mary spent her final years on earth – there are two strong historical traditions. One is that, following the Ascension of Jesus, Mary returned with the Apostles to Jerusalem and lived there for the remainder of her earthly years. But there is other evidence that seems to show that Mary, under the protection of the Apostle John, went to a place near Ephesus (modern-day Turkey) and stayed there until she was assumed into heaven. That second tradition – the Ephesus one – is linked to the 19th century visions of Anne Catherine Emmerich, a bedridden Augustinian nun in Germany. The Church has never pronounced formally on the authenticity of either of these sites. I think that the final answer to your question is lost in history and unlikely ever to be settled. But this doesn’t stop anyone from honoring the Virgin Mary, the Mother of God and our mother.
Questions may be sent to Father Kenneth Doyle at askfatherdoyle@ gmail.com and 30 Columbia Circle Dr., Albany, N.Y. 12203.
The gift of wisdom
is fit for a king, and the rest of us
lovely virtual Mass, marked by the lilting tones of an equally lovely Irish monsignor, was an opportunity to reflect on a homily that contrasted King Midas, of Greek mythology fame, and King Solomon, beloved of God and biblical author. Both kings were given the opportunity to have one wish fulfilled. For King Midas, the offer came from the god Dionysius. Midas, who was already extravagantly wealthy, wished that all he touched would turn to gold. Dionysius warned him to think carefully, but Midas insisted this is what he wanted. His wish was fulfilled, but when his food turned to gold and he nearly starved, and his daughter turned to gold when he hugged her, Midas realized he had made a terrible mistake. The blessing had become a curse. Solomon, who was also wealthy as kings go, saw the Lord God, in a dream. God said to him, “Ask, and I will give it to you!” Solomon responded, “Give your servant an understanding heart to judge your people and to discern between good and evil,” explaining to God that he wanted only to know how to govern God’s people well. God was so pleased with Solomon’s request, he gifted him with riches and honor and long life, for as long as Solomon kept God’s statutes and commandments. Solomon asked for wisdom and God rewarded him, also, with insight and understanding beyond measure, making him the wisest of all men.
THINGS MY FATHER TAUGHT ME Mary Clifford Morrell
When the Irish monsignor came to the end of his homily he asked, “If God were to grant us that wish, what would we ask for?” I wanted to raise my hand and ask for clarification. Does the wish have to be just for me, can it be for someone else? Everyone else? Really, at this very moment, wouldn’t someone want to ask for an end to the pandemic? But maybe in my humanness I’d want to ask for something for my family. Can my wish be worded to cover more than one thing, like “abundance of health, happiness and safety?” What are the parameters of the question?? I felt like a teenager who didn’t understand the essay assignment. I chastised myself, thinking, it’s not a hard question, what is your problem? The problem is I’m a human being, one of those we all know often to be impulsive, short-sighted and quick to give in to emotions that override our ability to spend a bit of time in quiet contemplation. And there is the root of the problem. Wisdom is the fruit of silence, of listening, of a desire to see what is real and what is of God. In his 2014 series
of talks about the Gift of Wisdom, Pope Francis explained that wisdom “is the grace of being able to see everything with the eyes of God. It is simply this: Seeing the world, situations, conjunctures, problems, everything with God’s eyes. This is wisdom. Often we see things as we want to see them or according to our heart, with love, with hate, with envy. No, this is not God’s eyes. Wisdom is what the Holy Spirit does within us so that we can see everything with God’s eyes. This is the gift of wisdom.” Pope Francis also stressed that wisdom cannot be learned, which is why we must ask God for the gift of the Holy Spirit and the gift of wisdom that teaches us, also, “to feel with God’s heart [and] to speak with God’s words.” I’ll be going back to that Irish parish for Mass next Sunday. I’m looking forward to the next homily. Mary Clifford Morrell is the author of “Things My Father Taught Me About Love,” and “Let Go and Live: Reclaiming your life by releasing your emotional clutter,” both available as ebooks on Amazon.com.
Columnist Mary Morrell reflects on the meaning of wisdom saying, “Wisdom is the fruit of silence, of listening, of a desire to see what is real and what is of God.” Photo from Shutterstock.com
August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 45
Potential for growth Continued from 14
accompaniment.’ If deep roots are planted, the Parish will become a place where solitude is overcome, which has affected so many lives, as well as being ‘a sanctuary where the thirsty come to drink in the midst of their journey and a center of constant missionary outreach (#26).’” “It is easy for Pastors and parish leaders to fall into a mindset of ‘offering services’ to parishioners or adopting a ‘bureaucratic’ approach to all the tasks of parish life. However, these attitudes are not in keeping with the mission of evangelization or with the deep reality of the Church herself. We must change our thinking if we are to cultivate a ‘missionary reform of pastoral action’” (#35). A BLUEPRINT FOR LEADERSHIP The second half of the instruction does a great service for the Church, combining from various sources the established teaching and principles regarding parishes, pastoral leadership, parish restructuring and interparish cooperation. It provides an understanding of how these all fit together, and it suggests ways to apply these norms to our pastoral activity and decision-making. First among these is an appreciation for the unique and indispensable roles of parish priests, deacons, consecrated religious,
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46 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
lay men and women. All the baptized are co-responsible for the mission of the Church, but each has a distinct contribution to make. Enabling and encouraging the full participation of each in the mission is crucial. Proceeding from a renewed understanding of parish, of mission, and co-responsibility for the mission, the Congregation for the Clergy spends considerable time on the implications for our modern circumstances. It commends the building up of bonds within the presbyterate (corps of priests in a diocese), in the sharing of prayer and priestly fraternity, as a sign of communion. It discusses that each parish should normally have its own pastor and clarifies that only priests can serve as pastor of a parish. However, recognizing that local dioceses are experiencing a “shortage” of priests, it also gives direction about the paragraphs in Canon Law that allow for the assigning of a pastor to multiple parishes, for pastoral administrators, for an “In-Solidum” model of priests serving a group of parishes together, and even for the naming a deacon, religious or layperson as “Moderator of Pastoral Care” on a temporary basis if the need arises. The instruction restates existing criteria for diocesan restructuring efforts (closures, mergers, and parishes sharing a pastor), and directs attention in these cases toward the mission of evangelization, warning against solely administrative concerns. It touches on parishes ministering among diverse language and cultural groups; and, also comments on the role of the finance council, pastoral council and members of the staff. NEIGHBORS OF ONE MISSION Finally, the instruction recommends that pastoral efforts that extend beyond the territory of a single parish can be more effective. The Congregation promotes a vision of pastoral care based on “closeness and cooperation” between parishes. It roots these working relationships in the communion and common mission which parishes share. Here in the Diocese of Trenton, collaborative ministry between parishes has been at the heart of what we have been doing with our Faith in the Future initiative for the last five years. The new instruction supports our continuing efforts and makes them an ordinary expectation rather than exceptional or optional. It points to an exciting and compelling vision for the renewal of our parishes. Read it for yourself and let it inspire you. In this moment, as we continue to deal with restrictions aimed at stopping the spread of COVID-19, it is perhaps more evident than ever that every Catholic has a part to play in the mission of evangelization. So many people are MORE ONLINE lonely or lost, fearful To read the document in English, Spanish, or in need. Every Portuguese and more, visit the online Catholic can show the version of this article at TrentonMonitor. face of Jesus to family com>News>Diocese members, neighbors and coworkers in their lives. I hope we can all be open to the invitation of the Holy Spirit to be active in the renewal of our parishes. Only then will our parishes become more fully communities of missionary outreach that accompany people and help them to find friendship with Jesus Christ.
‘Blessed are the Peacemakers’ Mater Dei Prep students encourage all to wear face masks in new video BY JOHN SPINELLI Correspondent
ater Dei Prep students have helped produce a video to show their appreciation for first responders, health care professionals and essential workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the video, #mymaskisforyou, the Middletown students read letters written by local nurses, play music and share poems and inspirational quotes to encourage others to wear a face mask to slow the spread of COVID. “As students during the quarantine, our hardships come in the way [of] living through the daily routines – waking up, checking social media, helping around the house and hours of schoolwork. For essential workers and health care professionals, it’s not the same,” rising senior Fiona Fitzgerald says in the video. “We are dealing with a difficult pandemic. Our definition of who we are and how we are affected will play a role in shaping peace … beyond tomorrow,” she continues. “Today, I will wear a mask for you – because to shape a future will require that we all play a role in keeping each other safe.” The video was created by those from Mater Dei Prep’s Global Leaders Institute, which is dedicated “To shape to making a positive change in the a future will world on both a lorequire that cal and global scale. They paired with Deborah Greene we all play of the non-governa role in mental organikeeping each zation (NGO) Pathways to Peace. other safe.” Mater Dei teacher George Anthony has served as a Pathways to Peace United Nations representative for decades, and the Global Leaders Institute often presents with PTP at the U.N. Anthony, the Global Leaders coordinator, explained the project, saying, “We want people to know when wearing a mask, it is communicating to the public [the message that] ‘I care about you, and I don’t want you
to get sick.’ This project is deeply rooted in our Catholic values; our hope is for the world and nation to heal and find peace.” For example, junior Alessandra Fleming quotes from a nurse’s letter in the video. “I don’t think I could ever really explain in words what we go through during our
12-hour shift. I can’t make you imagine the amount of emotional, mental, physical, and phycological pain and exhaustion we experience.” Said rising junior Elizabeth Bertsch, “By sharing … the firsthand accounts of those on the front lines, we can inform the public of the daily struggles of our nurses, doctors and others who spend a majority of their days helping patients fight for their lives.” To watch the video and learn more about the #mymaskisforyou project, visit www.materdeiprep.org > News.
Rising senior Fiona Fitzgerald of Mater Dei Prep gives a peace sign in this screenshot from the #mymaskisforyou video. YouTube screenshot
In Their Own Words Young people around the Diocese discuss wearing a mask in public: “I don’t like wearing a mask, but it’s a small price to pay to protect someone else’s well-being. It’s our job as Catholics to keep others safe.” Christa Andrusiewicz, St. Gregory the Great Parish, Hamilton “If each person makes an effort, we can help our health care workers. Not only are we promoting peace by reducing the number of people who contract the virus, we are bringing peace to front-line workers and their families who continue to worry about their safety.” Elizabeth Bertsch, Mater Dei Prep, Middletown “Our country and our world are pleading for people to sacrifice a small part of their comfort, convenience. The Catholic faith holds sacrifice at its core – Jesus Christ died for us. He made the ultimate sacrifice and asks only in return that we make small sacrifices to love those around us.” Maureen McGarry, 21, St. Joseph Parish, Toms River, who is attending The Catholic University of America, Washington “While I am not in a high-risk group, I interact with other people who may be whenever I leave the house. As Catholics, it is our duty to strive to care for everyone around us. Discomfort is worth it if someone’s life is the alternative.” Erin McGarry, 21, St. Joseph Parish, Toms River, who is attending Villanova University, Pa. August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 47
Community TCA President Mike Knowles, left, takes a photo with business owner Paul Pennacchi for a social-distanced check presentation. Rose O’Connor photo
‘You Never Forget Your Roots’ Paul Pennacchi means business when making a difference in the community BY ROSE O’CONNOR Correspondent
or local businessman Paul Pennacchi, the seeds of philanthropy were planted at an early age by his father, Anthony. “I remember my father saying, ‘There are two types of people in this world: givers and takers. Which one are you going to be?’ That stuck with me my whole life, and from that point on, I always tried to make a difference in someone’s life,” Pennacchi said. As president of A. Pennacchi & Sons Masonry Restoration Company, Hamilton, he has certainly worked over the years to make a difference in Mercer County and beyond. In addition to serving as head of the family business, founded by his father in 1947, Pennacchi is also a member and signatory contractor with Bricklayers Union Local 5 and 6 of New Jersey and Local 1 of Philadelphia. The business has restored religious, historical and government structures, many in the Diocese of Trenton, and has expanded into Bryn Mawr, Pa., and New York City. While the business has extended, Pennacchi’s heart remains close to the community from which he hails. “You never forget your roots. You always remember the people and places that have changed your life,” he said.
As a result, he has devoted much of his time to supporting local organizations, including but not limited to the Knights of Columbus, the Mercer County CYO, Trenton Catholic Academy, Hamilton, and parishes in the Diocese of Trenton. He recently worked with the Mercer County Police and Fireman’s Foundation for Families, a board in which he operates as a member of the Chairman’s Advisory Committee, to raise funds for a Hamilton West High School graduate whose mother died protecting her daughter when their house collapsed in July 2018. The young woman plans to attend the University of Virginia in the fall. Pennacchi and his wife, Rosina, are parishioners of St. Paul Parish, Princeton, but he jokes that he “feels as though he belongs to every parish” since his business has serviced many churches in the Diocese. During the holidays, he donates the Christmas decorations for Our Lady of the Angels Parish, Trenton, the faith community his family belonged to during his youth. Pennacchi has also been a longtime supporter of Trenton Catholic Academy, formerly known as McCorristin Catholic High School, from where he graduated in 1985. “It was such a great experience,” he said of his alma mater. “I loved my teachers and my time there. I am more than happy to help the school.” This past May, Pennacchi donated funding for billboards in Hamilton and Trenton congratulating TCA’s Upper and Lower
48 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
School graduates. For the 2020-2021 school year, he is “adopting a student” – funding a full scholarship for an Upper School student, an educational opportunity he believes sets the foundation for future success. “These students are our future,” he said. “The kids at TCA are wonderful kids. They’re polite and well-mannered. They want a bright future and work hard to “You make the world a better place.” always Pennacchi notes remember the importance the people of giving back to the community, and places and stresses that donating isn’t only that have about money – one’s time is needed, too, changed especially during your life.” COVID-19. “Take a few moments out of the day to try and make someone’s life better,” he advised. Michael Knowles, TCA president, extended appreciation to Pennacchi and all the school’s benefactors. “Paul lives the mission of service to others. We are grateful that he continues to give back to the school community that made a difference in his life,” Knowles said. “Sister Dorothy Payne, our late president, always said, ‘We are here for systemic change.’ Paul is a change agent and truly a blessing to TCA.”
In the Parishes
Faithful offer tips to make virtual ministries happen
continue outreach via virtual platforms BY MARY STADNYK Associate Editor
to introduce himself or herself and talk about their deceased loved one. Other members offer support and share how they dealt with similar situations. St. Joan of Arc Parish, Marlton, is entering its sixth year of the “That Man Is You” program. Prior to the pandemic, participants would meet in person for 13 consecutive weeks in the fall and another 13 weeks in the winter and spring months. Wes Trunko, a parish TMIY leader, said that when all parish activities were
eacon Bob Tharp came to an important realization after receiving an email from a participant in the bereavement support group in St. Raphael-Holy Angels Parish, Hamilton. “There are people who need someone to share the struggles they are dealing with in a world that does not allow for social interaction,” he said. While the group had to suspend in-person meetings because of COVID-19, the participant continued to need support as she dealt with a death in the family. “The pandemic quarantine had caused much of her grief to resurface, and she hoped that something could be done to help Members of the “That Man Is You” program in St. Joan of Arc Parish, her process these Marlton, participate in a virtual meeting. Courtesy photo feelings,” Deacon Tharp said. “It is essential that The woman’s email motivated him to see if the support group could meet we continue to find virtually. They now hold online sessions new ways to reach at 7 p.m. on the first and third Tuesdays of each month. UNDETERRED Like St. Raphael-Holy Angels, there are a number of parishes around the Diocese that have created virtual ministries and outreach during the pandemic. “What we do online is pretty much the same as when we were meeting live,” said Deacon Tharp, moderator of the bereavement support group. Sessions start and end with prayer; each person is asked
out to one another.”
suspended, the agency that produces the program introduced a virtual version. DVDs were replaced with online videos, and suggestions were offered on how to hold small group discussions live online. The group began meeting online March 25 for the spring months and will continue that format when the program resumes in September. Continued on 59
BY MARY STADNYK Associate Editor
on’t delay.” That is the advice Joanne Hall has for any parishes looking to offer virtual ministries. “The COVID-19 situation is not going away quickly, and many people who are isolated and alone will benefit from seeing familiar faces and praying together. We are building an authentic community in virtual meetings,” said Hall, of St. Luke Parish, Toms River. “In some ways, the virtual meetings also provide a means for us to be kinder to ourselves and the environment, without having to leave home and drive.” Hall sends out weekly email reminders for the “Conversations with the Word” ministry, which meets weekly online. For parishioners who are challenged by the technology, she offers to meet with them individually. With one practice session, she said, “they are usually up and running very quickly. We also offer a telephone option so people can call in if they only want to listen and share.” Lou Monticchio, facilitator for the parish pastoral council in St. Raphael-Holy Angels Parish, Hamilton, outlined a few logistics that were needed to get the Virtual Faith Gatherings off the ground. These tools, he said, are helpful for any parish ministry looking to move online during the pandemic. Research secure online meeting platforms and undertake basic training by reading or watching videos online. Communicate meeting links through direct mail. Monticchio said his parish never posts links on social media sites. Utilize Apple Music or YouTube for the opening and closing songs. Use PowerPoint to display the opening and closing prayers with appropriate backgrounds. Online meeting platforms can allow for the muting of participants during various parts of the meeting such as prayer services. They can also allow for virtual breakout rooms for small group discussions or fellowship. Continued on 59
We would like to thank TOSHIBA, exclusive provider of copier services in the Diocese of Trenton Chancery building, for their sponsorship of this page.
August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 49
50 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
atholic schools throughout the Diocese of Trenton held in-person, socially distanced outdoor graduations throughout July as COVID-19 restrictions allowed for larger gatherings. For the graduates and their families, the opportunity to mark the culmination of their high school and middle school journeys was both unique and vital. At top left, Riley Dinnell presents her valedictory speech during St. John Vianney High School’s July 18 ceremony. The Holmdel school graduated 210 students. Top right, the 203 graduates of Christian Brothers Academy, Lincroft, gathered July 7 for its 58th annual commencement exercises, donning matching CBA Colts masks along with caps and gowns. Below, Notre Dame High School, Lawrenceville, celebrated its 268 seniors July 18 on the school’s Msgr. Nolan field, after having virtual and individual in-person commencements in June. At left, St. Rose High School grads hold their Belmar school’s flag, and the papal and U.S. flags, before their procession preceding commencement July 6; notable speaker James M. Murray, 26th director of the United States Secret Service, and 1986 St. Rose alum, addressed the 109 graduates.
LOOK BACK AT THE MONITOR’S COVERAGE OF THE CLASS OF 2020! VISIT TRENTONMONITOR.COM/ GRAD2020
PPP assists Catholic churches, schools, agencies Continued from 10
collection plate revenue plummeted. Though online giving was in place, Manzi said it was apparent that cost-cutting measures would be inevitable in both the parish and St. Leo the Great School. About 40 employees at the school and parish were furloughed. Receiving the second round of PPP funds in May allowed those furloughed to return to their jobs. As such, staff was available to help their communities in numerous ways. The school cafeteria manager worked with its vendors to get food and hard-to-find items such as paper goods and disinfectants for those seeking help. Five staff members spent weeks calling each of the parish’s 2,800 families. “We just wanted to ask, ‘How are you doing? Do you need help?’” Manzi said. “In some cases, we were reaching people who have not been to church in years and who were shocked that we had called to show we care.” “We were a voice with no agenda,” he continued. “We didn’t ask them for funds. We directed them to our website and told them we were here for them.” THE BIG PICTURE Manzi was quick to point out that the PPP monies were not an alternative to the church donations. “One thing didn’t replace the other,” he said, explaining that the parish continued to reach out to parishioners with the message, “If your means allow, please
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FISCAL YEAR 2020-2021
PUBLIC ANNOUNCEMENT Diocese of Trenton
The Diocese of Trenton announced today that low cost, nutritious school lunches and/or breakfasts and/or milk are available to all children enrolled in the school. In addition, meals, snacks and/or milk will be provided free or at a greatly reduced price to children from households whose gross income are at or below those shown for their household size on the income scale. Applications for Free and Reduced Price School Meals are sent to the households of all children enrolled in the school districts. Go to TRENTONMONITOR.COM to view the INCOME ELIGIBILITY GUIDELINES Effective from July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021
(As announced by the United States Department of Agriculture)
continue your support as we rely on your generosity to be able to help those who don’t have the means to help themselves.” Mladenetz agreed. “Since there are strict guidelines to follow in spending PPP funds, the CYO has been maintaining careful documentation so that we may apply for full loan forgiveness,” he said. “We have been trying to get the word out to our supporters that our need for fundraising is still there to continue to support all the other good things that the CYO does at all five of our locations in Mercer County.” Without PPP funding, Mladenetz and Manzi said, thousands of families would not have received critically needed services. Plus, the CYO and St. Leo the Great Parish and School were able to support their own staff and their families by keeping workers employed. All of which, Manzi said, boils down to Catholic social teaching and the common good. “We are our brother’s keeper,” Manzi said. “This issue isn’t about a political affiliation, it’s about helping our fellow man secure the basics of life.” “When we isolate people by denomination, the color of their skin, their political or religious affiliation – we are practicing negativity. We’re all equal in the eyes of God,” he continued. “If you’ve got to say, ‘We can’t give monies to them because they’re Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, etc.,’ we are totally missing the point of what it means to be inhabitants of this earth. The rent you pay for being here is the service you offer to others.” Catholic News Service contributed to this story.
THE DIOCESE OF TRENTON is committed to the initiatives outlined in the U.S. Bishops’ Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People and to its own policies and guidelines in regard to the reporting and investigation of sexual abuse allegations involving minors. If you have been sexually abused as a minor by a member of the clergy or anyone representing the Catholic Church, or if you know of someone who was, you can report that abuse through the diocesan
ABUSE HOTLINE: 1-888-296-2965
or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Diocese of Trenton reports any allegations of sexual abuse to the appropriate law enforcement agencies. Anyone with an allegation is also encouraged to provide that information to local law enforcement authorities. August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 51
Back in the
‘Last Dance’ baseball tourney gives high school students chance to take field after canceled season BY RICH FISHER Contributing Editor
hen his senior season of baseball was canceled due to COVID-19, St. John Vianney’s Dominic Cerniglia turned to prayer. Then came the “Last Dance” World Series, which gave 222 New Jersey high school teams the opportunity to play a competitive tournament July 14-31. “I was praying I got one last chance,” said Cerniglia, who recently graduated from the Holmdel high school. “When it came out with the news we were doing a tournament, it was like a prayer answered.” Pitcher Connor Egan, who missed his senior season at Trenton Catholic Academy, felt likewise. “I was praying “Now we could get back out there,” said Egan, I got to a parishioner of St. Raphael-Holy Angels, know Hamilton. “I was with when my three of my teammates when we found last at-bat out about the season [being canceled]. was.” There was no talking, no anything. Just silence.” It was a little different when he got word of the “Last Dance.” “I was jumping around,” Egan said. “I ran through my house to all my family members. It was exciting.” GETTING CLOSURE The brainchild of Mike Murray, athletic director and head baseball coach in St.
A Belmar batter swings at a pitch by RBI Baseball during a July 14 “Last Dance” tournament game in Wall. RBI Baseball, consisting of players from St. John Vianney High School, Holmdel, took a 6-0 win over Belmar, which was composed of players from St. Rose High School. Rich Hundley photo Joseph High School, Metuchen, the tournament was designed to give seniors one last hurrah, but high school players of any age were eligible. “Mike Murray did a great job,” said coach Rich Lanko of St. Rose High School, Belmar. “He had a ton of work to do to get this thing together. Everyone appreciates it.” Since the tournament was not affiliated with the NJSIAA, the state’s governing athletic body, teams could not represent their high schools. The teams had to go by a different name, and players had to help pay for uniforms and other expenses if their school could not get a sponsor. SJV went by RBI Baseball and won two games in pool play, while TCA was the NJ Tigers and also won twice, coming within a win of a South Section Sweet 16 berth. Lawrenceville’s Notre Dame High School, which named itself Lawrence Road Irish, was the lone Diocese of Trenton squad to reach the round of 16 in the South section. The tournament concluded July 31, when the North and South champions met at Arm & Hammer Stadium in Trenton.
52 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
A young Belmar team, which represented St. Rose, went 0-3 in pool play, but catcher Nolan Dacey felt fortunate to get closure to his career since he will not be playing in college. “I didn’t get a game [this past spring] knowing it was my final game,” said Dacey, of St. Denis Parish, Manasquan. “Now I got to know when my last at-bat was. I got to take in the moment, which is a lot more meaningful.” Cerniglia felt the same way, saying, “I had just made the decision I would either walk-on or not play at all at West Chester (University in Pennsylvania), so the chance I might have played my last game ever without knowing it was kind of upsetting.” ADRENALINE RUSH When the tournament became official, teams were allowed to practice for several weeks, but due to a state rule, their high school coaches could not join them until July 13, one day before the tournament started. Once those July 14 games were played, it was like lightning was unleashed.
Safety is name of game
during ‘Last Dance’ BY RICH FISHER Contributing Editor
For ‘Last Dance’ photos, visit TrentonMonitor.com> Multimedia>Photo Galleries
“For the most part, I’ve never seen our kids with that kind of energy,” said RBI Baseball assistant coach Scott Bellone. “It’s almost like it was bottled up.” Belmar fell to RBI Baseball in the opener, but Lanko said his team had the same energy. “We were definitely excited. The Shore Conference is always loud, a lot of energy, but there was definitely something extra from the teams.” NJ Tigers’ pitcher/outfielder Ali Pompey agreed. “We were so hyped for it, ready to get back out practicing again … hoping to give our all. All the adrenaline was rushing that first day. Everyone was ready to have fun, play the game.” SCOUTING OPPORTUNITIES Pompey is still undecided on where he will play in college, and felt that missing a final season to play in front of scouts might limit his choices. Fortunately, pro scouts and all college scouts, except for Division I, were allowed to attend games. “I saw some community college guys at our games,” Lanko said. “Missing the spring especially hurt the juniors; it’s such a huge year for them [recruiting-wise]. So it’s huge to have this and have some of the travel leagues and showcases starting up.”
when emotions were high as Matteo Pasculli homered. “It was hard not to congratulate him,” said Dominic Cerniglia, an RBI Baseball senior. “We couldn’t shake his hand when he was walking off the mound.” What made the Pasculli non-celebration even tougher – it was his birthday. “The first thing you want to do is go out and greet him at home plate,” Bellone said. “I’m screaming from the dugout, ‘No, no, stay back, don’t touch!’ It’s tough because … it’s what we’ve done all our lives.” Bellone noted that several RBI coaches handled the game situation, while others just focused on keeping everyone social distanced. Another thing to keep an eye on: snacks.
reparing for baseball amidst a pandemic is not the easiest task, but the 222 teams that played in the “Last Dance” World Series made it work. Obvious precautions had to be taken before the tournament, before and during each game. “In order for us to practice, we had to follow strict guidelines from the CDC, NJSIAA and the school,” said St. John Vianney assistant coach Scott Bellone, who coached RBI Baseball, which consisted of SJV students. “It was a matter of getting our own insurance, taking everyone’s temperature, having a [COVID-19] questionnaire before we got out of the parking lot” and onto the field. The process would continue before each game. Players and coaches were required to wear face masks in the dugout; the game would be halted if any team disobeyed that rule. Between each inning, coaches sprayed every player’s hands with sanitizer. Ali Pompey, who played for the NJ Tigers, which consisted of Trenton Catholic Academy students, just went with the flow. “It’s strange. But I know it’s all safety precautions to make sure COVID doesn’t spread anymore.” He also noted that during RBI Baseball’s pool games at Trenton Babe Ruth, Trenton, Trenton Catholic Academy’s Ali Pompey (playing for NJ Titeams had to sit in the bleachgers) has his temperature taken before a July 15 game at the ers rather than in the dugouts. city’s Babe Ruth field. Rich Fisher photo Probably the toughest part “My trainer came up and said some guys for all involved was the no-contact rule – were chewing sunflower seeds,” Belmar’s other than fist and elbow bumps – during coach Rich Lanko said. “I didn’t even think games. With emotions being a huge part about it. You can’t chew them because of competitive athletics, there is always the you’re not allowed to spit.” instinct to high-five or hug a teammate. At least one player wasn’t bothered by That made things tough for RBI Baseball after Thomas Wright threw six innings that aspect. “I’m a gum guy,” Tigers’ pitcher Connor Egan said with a grin. “We’re of no-hit ball with 10 strikeouts in their allowed to chew that.” opening-day win. Or, in the first inning,
August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 53
BRIDGET ALMA MCGLYNN GOWEN, MOTHER OF PRIEST Bridget Alma McGlynn Gowen died July 14 in her home in Manasquan at age 85. She was the mother of Father Daniel Gowen, pastor of Jesus the Good Shepherd Parish, Beverly. Born in Bayonne, Mrs. Gowen graduated from Holy Family Academy, Bayonne. She was employed by the Electro-Dynamic Company, as secretary to the safety director, who was responsible for building PT boats during World War II, including the famous PT-109. She and her husband, Matthew, moved to Manasquan in 1961 and were members of St. Denis Parish for more than 60 years. She was active as a member of the Altar Rosary Society and the school PTA for more than 30 years. Father Gowen noted that his mother had many medical issues but always spoke of being grateful to God for her 64 years of marriage and large family. “Her faith was important to her, and that is something she instituted in her children,” Father Gowen said, noting that it pleased his mother that her six children all remained close to their Catholic faith. “She is happy with the Lord,” he said. “She lived a blessed life.” Mrs. Gowen was predeceased by her parents, Mary McGettigan and Daniel McGlynn, of Donegal, Ireland, and two brothers, Patrick and Daniel Jr. In addition to her husband of 64 years and her priest-son, she is survived by five other children: Matthew Jr. (Diana); Bernard (Dawn); Joseph (Laurie); James (Linda), and Marianne Gowen Ely (Brien); 13
N REMEMBRANCE, a listing of priests and deacons of the Diocese of Trenton Iwho have died, can be found on TrentonMonitor.com>News>Obituaries
grandchildren; a great-granddaughter; a sister and many nieces and nephews. Burial was in St. Catharine Cemetery, Wall Township. Memorial donations may be made to Mary’s Place by the Sea, 22 Main Ave., Ocean Grove, NJ 07756, or marysplacebythesea.org. SISTER M. ISABEL SCHRATWIESER, FORMER EDUCATOR Sister M. Isabel Schratwieser, a member of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, died July 16 in Our Lady of Peace Residence in Scranton, Pa. Born in 1922 in East Rockaway, N.Y., and given the name Helen, Sister Isabel entered the IHM congregation Feb. 1, 1947, and made her temporary profession of vows Aug. 2, 1949, and her final profession of vows Aug. 2, 1952. Sister Isabel earned a bachelor of science degree in home economics/history and a master of arts degree in English from Marywood College, Scranton. Sister Isabel served as a teacher in schools in Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York and Delaware. In the Trenton Diocese, she served in the former Mount Holly Regional Catholic School, Mount Holly, and Our Lady of Mount Carmel School, Asbury Park, from 1977 to 1980. She is survived by the members of the IHM Congregation. Memorial contributions may be made to support the retired IHM Sisters c/o the IHM Sisters Retirement Fund, IHM Center, 2300 Adams Ave., Scranton, PA 18509.
REGIS PHILBIN DIES; CATHOLIC HOSTED 17,000-PLUS HOURS ON TV WASHINGTON (CNS) • Regis Philbin, the Catholic talkand game-show host whose career in television spanned six decades, died July 24 at age 88 of cardiovascular disease at a hospital in Greenwich, Conn., where he lived. Philbin is credited by Guinness World Records as having been on air more than anyone else on TV, putting the figure at more than 17,000 hours. Philbin was a 1953 graduate of the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, and an avid supporter of his alma mater. He also graduated from Cardinal Hayes High School in New York, and was a generous benefactor there as well. Regis Philbin “Regis regaled millions on air through the years, oftentimes sharing a passionate love for his alma mater with viewers,” said Holy Cross Father John Jenkins, Notre Dame’s president. “He will be remembered at Notre Dame for his unfailing support for the university and its mission, including the Philbin Studio Theater in our performing arts center. He likewise was generous with his time and talent in support of South Bend’s Center for the Homeless and other worthy causes. Our prayers are with his wife, Joy, and their daughters and Notre Dame alumnae Joanna and J.J.” In 2002, Philbin had given $2.75 million for the construction of the Regis Philbin Studio Theater on the campus. It is home for lab and performance art productions in Notre Dame’s department of film, television and theater. The 100-seat facility was designed for maximum technical and seating flexibility. Philbin first came to national attention as the announcer and sidekick to Joey Bishop on Bishop’s mid-1960s late-night talk show on ABC, which was seeking to siphon viewers from Johnny Carson and “The Tonight Show.” It didn’t work. Undaunted, Philbin carved out a career, making a niche for himself in morning TV. In 1983, Philbin and Cyndy Garvey, thenwife of Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Steve Garvey, hosted “The Morning Show” in New York. In 1985, Garvey was replaced by Kathie Lee Gifford, wife of New York Giants star Frank Gifford. In 1988, what was “The Morning Show” went into syndication as “Live! With Regis and Kathie Lee.” He later hosted the U.S. version of “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?” for ABC. “I think everything I am is the result of 16 years of Catholic education,” Philbin said in a 1996 interview. “The values that you learn as a kid stay with you the rest of your life. Certainly, those nuns and brothers and priests drummed enough of those values into us that it helped us tremendously.”
OBITUARY INFORMATION Additional obituaries will be posted to TrentonMonitor.com as information becomes available.
54 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
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‘RAISING UPRIGHT KIDS IN AN UPSIDE-DOWN WORLD: DEFYING THE ANTI-PARENT CULTURE’ ‘HEARTSTORMING: CREATING A PLACE GOD CAN CALL HOME’ By Robert J. Wicks. Paulist Press. 158 pp., $21.95.
n these unsettling days, the prospect of talking with a gentle, listening friend about our relationship with God may sound appealing indeed. That’s what Robert Wicks, author, speaker and psychologist, provides here for the reader. His introduction sets the tone: “Come Sit By Me: An Invitation to Prayerfully Experience Living with More Meaning, Inner Peace and Joy.” Although it was written well before the pandemic and its forced isolation, there is much in this book that can be helpful these days. Wicks suggests that our emotions, instead of getting in the way of prayer, may help us tune in more effectively to God. “Emotions serve as hints to look further to see how God may be sitting with us.” He presents 45 examples of field notes, each a couple of pages of reflection on the ways he has noticed God at work in his life lately. An example is the inevitable feeling that we all have at times of loneliness, feeling a bit left out of “the action.” He invites readers to make their own field notes and offers some ideas of how to begin. By Kathleen Finley, Catholic News Service
By Ray Guarendi. EWTN Publishing. 135 pp., $14.95.
ay Guarendi, EWTN radio host, prolific author and parent of 10 adopted children, challenges parents to raise “upright kids in an upside-down world.” He confronts the mindset of our culture that continually asks parents to lower the bar and expectations for children while caving to the peer pressure of collective parent group think. The heart of this book wages war on the overuse and misuse of cellphones, social media, computers and television, which is the “upside-down world” he writes of. The reader will admire Guarendi for his sensible stance on how these devices should be used. Any parent of a child younger than 18 will recognize the ever-present electronic devices that are part of our “new-normal” worldwide. Guarendi states emphatically, “The culture doesn’t value your values.” How do you deal with grandparents who allow TV to be watched at their house when you forbid it? How do you parent children whose friends allow their children to own cellphones and you don’t? Guarendi’s book provides guidance and food for thought for those whose values are more in line with the Catholic faith than of society. By Allan F. Wright, Catholic News Service
‘PURSUING FREEDOM: BECOMING THE MAN YOU COULD BE’ By Thomas Wurtz. Our Sunday Visitor. 120 pp., $14.95.
he world desperately needs great men of God. In his newest book, Thomas Wurtz, founder and director of Varsity Catholic, a division of FOCUS (Fellowship of Catholic University Students), challenges readers to become the men God made them to be by guiding them through a spiritual development boot camp. Wurtz highlights eight characteristics essential to finding true freedom and embracing each man’s unique calling: acknowledgement of the spiritual realm, self-control, magnanimity, humility, resilience, surrender, commitment to mission and love. He gives the reader the tools to live in true freedom in God. “From one man to another, in the company of the saints, Wurtz will help equip you to walk through the joys and travails of modern manhood. I commend this book to my brothers in Christ,” FOCUS Founder Curtis Martin said. From staff reports
The Diocese of Trenton and The Monitor would like to thank GALLAGHER INSURANCE for their support and sponsorship of this page. 56 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
PPP funding criticism unwarranted
Come to us for Come to the carethe you us for Come to us for Continued from 12 need. Stay inE care you PG P Athe A G G N IN ICN IPP IL T T T T P P P Ethe E E CC C C C C C A A A A W W W W O O O O N N N N • • • • E E E E serve millions of people in need, regardless of race, ethnicity or RYR E E E E F F F F need. Stay care you Y Y Y home you love. R TR T TO TN NNE NE EON O religion. The novel coronavirus only intensified the ofE the NO Nneeds N L in the A I in the C 9L need. Stay people we serve and the demand for our ministries. The loans we E home you P 1 A S 0 I applied for enabled our essential ministries to continue to function 2 home you R C love.love. TE arySP1E, fr2e0e1!9 in a time of national emergency. N WI JNanTuERonryth1, free! “In addition, shutdown orders and economic fallout associated S ’ reI dam nuaonth with the virus have affected everyone, including the thousands RY e’SfoW J A n bY 2re m of Catholic ministries – churches, schools, health care and social For more information T. M vMe AinR t tbheefo 2nd S e e n services – that employ about 1 million people in the United States. o . i about LIFE St. Francis, g h M ST nodve get t These loans have been an essential lifeline to keep hundreds of aM d call 609-599-LIFE (5433) or visit an thousands of employees on payroll, ensure families maintain their For more information www.stfrancismedical.org/LIFE.
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health insurance, and enable lay workers to continue serving their brothers and sisters during this crisis. “The Paycheck Protection Program was designed to protect the jobs of Americans from all walks of life, regardless of whether they work for for-profit or non-profit employers, faith-based or secular,” Archbishop Coakley said. In truth, parishes and Catholic schools, among other churchrun entities, are individual communities within a diocese, each with their own financial challenges and responsibilities. If these institutions had to close their doors, the impact on the public would be significant. Imagine, for a moment, the financial toll on the public school The report system to educate all the students who are currently enrolled in our Catholic by the schools. Consider the extra burden to Associated social service agencies if their Catholic counterparts could not serve so many Press was of those in need. Most importantly, the people uninformed ... employed by the Church who will be helped through PPP funding are U.S. and N.J. taxpayers … the revenue that allowed their employers to pay them nearly dried up in an instant because of the pandemic. They have families to feed and mortgages or rent to pay just like everyone else, and they are no less deserving of having their jobs protected as every other citizen. The report by the Associated Press was uninformed in the structure and operations of the Church; illogical in its failure to understand the toll that hurting the Church would impose on the wider public, and unjust in refusing to acknowledge that individuals who work for the Church are just as entitled to emergency relief as everyone else. We might wonder how or why they got it so wrong. Anti-Catholic sentiments are nothing new – they are unfortunately part of the bedrock of this nation, infecting our shores from other societies and cultures even before our founding. The venom unleashed by the AP article should remind us that there are always those who hate people and institutions of faith. The need to know and share the truth has never been greater, and we encourage our readers to do just that when faced with such ill-conceived and baseless attacks on the Church.
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August 2020 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE 57
Fun & Games SCRIPTURE SEARCH® Gospel for August 9, 2020
SCRIPTURE Matthew SEARCH 14: 22-33
TEST YOUR CATHOLIC KNOWLEDGE
Gospel for 9, 2020based • Matthew 14: 22-33 Following is aAugust word search on the Gospel reading for the is19th Sunday Ordinary Following a word searchin based on theTime, GospelCycle reading for 19th Sunday Ordinary Time, A: walking onthe windy waves.inThe words can be Cycle A: walking on windy waves. The words found in all directions in the puzzle. can be found in all directions in the puzzle.
CROWDS CROWDS ALONE ALONE A GHOST A GHOST AFRAID HE SAID,AFRAID COME HE SAID, COME WIND WIND CAUGHT CAUGHT
WENT UP WENT UP WAVES IN WAVES FEAR IN FEAR PETER SAID PETER SAID GOT OUT GOT OUT FRIGHTENED FRIGHTENED FAITH
EVENING EVENING WALKING WALKING SPOKE SPOKE COMMAND COMMAND STRONG STRONG SAVE ME SAVE ME DOUBT
Answers on back page. 1
© 2020 TRI-C-A Publications; tri-c-a-publications.com
ACROSS 7 He was one of 12 spies and represented Judah 8 Title in the canonization process 10 Title for a priest, at times 12 A priest in Madrid 13 “the babe leaped in her ___” (Lk 1:41) 16 Third century pope 18 Diocese on the French Riviera 20 ___ culpa 21 The Flood 22 Series of nine 25 “Without further ___ we must go on with our story” (2 Macc 6:17) 26 The woman wiped Jesus’ feet with hers (Lk 7:38) 27 What the apostles did while Jesus prayed in the Garden 28 The Feast of Christ the ___ 29 Catholic newsman and “Hardball” host Matthews 31 Title for a priest in Toronto 34 Sacramental sign of Confirmation 35 “I desire ___, not sacrifice” (Mt 9:13)
DOWN 1 Catholic- born actor of “National Treasure” fame 2 Noon prayer time 3 Sin against hope 4 Rosary piece 5 Catholic actress Dunaway 6 Patron saint of boy scouts 9 “___ from the Father and the Son” 11 John wore clothes made from this animal 14 Alpha and ___ 15 Canadian priest in the Hockey Hall of Fame 17 Make holy 18 Catholic news columnist, Robert ___ 19 ___ of the Saints 23 St. ___ Stein 24 God is three, with one divine nature 26 Minor Prophet of the 6th century 29 Brother of Abel 30 Ancestress of Jesus 32 “O Mary! we crown ___ with blossoms today” 33 “___ homo”
We would like to thank WILLIS TOWERS WATSON, Property/Casualty broker for the Diocese of Trenton, for their sponsorship of this page. 58 THE MONITOR MAGAZINE August 2020
The text to the Readings is visible on the screen, and she uses PowerPoint slides and online resources from places such as the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. Time Continued from 49 “We’re extremely grateful that we’ve been for faith sharing and questions for discusable to carry on despite the COVID-19 shut- sion and private reflection are also included. “As we have come to know one anothdown,” Trunko said of the program, which er better, we share on a deeper and more addresses life’s pressures specific to men and their roles as husbands, fathers, grandfathers, meaningful level about how the Scriptures connect to our daily lives, the world uncles, brothers and friends. and all that is happening during these GROWING TOGETHER tumultuous times,” Hall said. “During Online offerings in St. Luke Parish, these times of isolation, I think it is essenToms River, began in the early days of the tial that we continue to find new ways to statewide shutdown. In early March, a small reach out to one another.” group of parishioners formed an online prayer group and began reading Scripture and sharing with one another. “This prayer group has evolved and has Position Available given me a strong sense of connection, and we continue to meet every morning,” said Church of Saint Leo the Great Lincroft Joanne Hall, who volunteers in numerous parish ministries. In early May, she said, the parish began offering virtual “Conversations with the Word” Full Time Position • Salary Negotiable in which live online meetings are held every The Bursar is responsible for: Friday. Participants review the Readings for Serve as a subject matter expert for the upcoming Sunday “and prepare our hearts FACTS system as it pertains to Billing and minds to receive the Word of God during and Receivables. our sacred liturgies.” Responsible for tuition, after care and
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Survey your attendees at the end of the gathering to collect feedback using your online meeting program. Coordinate with parish website leaders to post a monthly schedule using email; ensure all parish administration staff are kept informed about the details. Other advice Monticchio offers parishes: Obtain the pastor’s support. Identify parishioners, ministry leaders with appropriate skills. Form a small team to share responsibilities. Be sure that the ministries being offered virtually are needed by the parishioners. Find a variety of ways for people to engage in the ministries. Most importantly, he said, “Be creative and be willing to try something new. Don’t be afraid to make a mistake. Keep experimenting until you have something that works for your parish.”
school event invoicing Provide monthly and as required outstanding Tuition and billing accounts Handle all aspects of the Collection process interfacing with School parents and outside legal firms for collection activities Manage the invoicing and receipt process to ensure student accounts are accurate and invoices are accurately submitted and applied. Provide a detailed report for all deposits to bookkeeper for entry to the GL and banking accounts A ssist parents in developing FACTS financial assistance applications Experience Must have hands on FACTS experience Collection Experience Computer literacy experience using Excel and Word applications Strong interactive skills Proven work experience as a Bursar Strong financial management skills BS degree in Accounting, Business Management or relevant degree
All Resumes submitted to: Joemanzi@ stleothegreat.com • no phone calls accepted Joseph A. Manzi, Church of Saint Leo the Great Director Finance, Operations and Development 50 Hurleys Lane, Lincroft NJ 07738
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