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Our faith calls us to action

Volume 29 • Number 6 • JUNE/JULY 2017 Serving The Counties Of Middlesex, New London Tolland, Windham, CT & Fishers Island, NY


The Class of 2017 Faith ~ Character ~ Service

On the cover:

St. Bernard School Class of 2017 celebrates graduation at the Cathedral of St. Patrick, Norwich, May 26, 2017.



Serving The Counties Of Middlesex, New London, Tolland, Windham, CT & Fishers Island, NY

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Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D. Bishop of Norwich


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Freedom for Mission.

In his letter to the Bishops of the Nation, Archbishop Lori, who is the chair of the USCCB Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty, noted that the “liturgical calendar celebrates a series of great martyrs who remained faithful in the face of persecution by political power.” We celebrate the faith of these very dynamic and courageous witnesses who made the supreme sacrifice for love of Christ and His Church. They are: Saint John Fisher, Saint Thomas More, Saint John the Baptist, Saint Peter and Saint Paul, and the First Martyrs of the Church of Rome. During this period, we pray that the Holy Spirit will enrich our faith and strengthen our courage to witness to the Lord and the Gospel. In our prayer and reflection, we pray that the Church’s mission to serve not be restricted, in any way, by government discrimination or regulations. The Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D., Bishop of Norwich, has made the following clergy and diocesan appointments in the Diocese of Norwich:

Clergy Appointments

Reverend Michael Phillippino, from Pastor, Saint John Parish, Middletown, to Pastor, Church of the Holy Family Parish, Hebron, and Saint Columba Parish, Columbia. Reverend Brian Romanowski, from Administrator, Church of the Holy Family Parish, Hebron, and Saint Columba Parish, Columbia, and Judge for Diocesan Tribunal Office and Bishop’s Delegate for Safe Environments to continuing as Judge for Diocesan Tribunal Office and Bishop’s Delegate for Safe Environments. Reverend James Thaikoottathil, JCD, from Pastor, Saint Sebastian Parish, Middletown, to Pastor, Saint John Parish, Middletown, and Saint Sebastian Parish, Middletown.


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LET FAITH LEAD THE WAY My Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ, Four days after the horrific act of terror in Manchester, England, that took the precious lives of twenty-two innocent victims, I was with the senior class of St. Bernard School at their graduation exercise. There, I found myself face to face with students, many the same age as most of the concert attendees in Manchester. It brought home the harsh reality of the trials faced by all young people today in an unstable world. How would these young people before me respond to another violent strike against sanity and love of one another? As the graduation ceremonies unfolded, the answers came quickly and resoundingly. The resilience, love and confidence of our young missionaries of hope was beautifully represented by the class orator, Julia Plunkett. She spoke of her challenges growing up and how she was the first woman in her family who would be attending college. She spoke of the strength and unity of the SBS community. She focused on the positive. On the hopeful. On living the mission of our faith. In her words, “We may be different, but we care about each other.” She further spoke of the lasting influence of the guiding words at SBS: humility, trust, zeal, compassion and simplicity. Here was a strong and hopeful voice speaking confidently on behalf of the next generation. Her words reminded me of a passage from St. Paul often quoted by His Holiness, Pope Francis, “May the God of hope fill you with all the joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13) That power overcomes the darkness and emptiness of evil acts of terror.

Faith is clearly at work in our graduating seniors as they strive to make a difference in a struggling world. While I appreciated the opportunity on graduation night to say a few words of validation and encouragement, the night belonged to the voices of the young, empowered with the values, education and character to shape their future. It was no surprise to hear, that same week, from Monsignor Les Janik, Diocesan Vicar General, that he had a similar experience at the Xavier High graduation. Monsignor Les had been there to hear Mihir Khunte address his fellow seniors and speak of their missionary foundation and their “potential to accomplish great things”. It was also my privilege to participate in the Academy of the Holy Family commencement a week later and to hear Bolu KuKu in her valedictory address acknowledge that “…at the Academy, I found the power to look towards the future.” Consistently, the Class of 2017 has delivered a powerful message of hope and resolve going forward. Clearly, this sentiment was evident, as well, in the formal remarks of Mercy High’s Eugenia Cho as she categorized the world at the moment as “uncertain.” Preparing to face that uncertain world, “Mercy,” she said “has taught us to care, to put importance on community and to set aside our differences.” In the words of her classmate and Valedictorian, Jessica Grodovich, “The class of 2017 is elegant, educated and strong -- fearless and ready for the world.” At every opportunity, our young missionaries of hope expressed their readiness to courageously follow the teachings of Jesus Christ and the lessons and values of faith and community. As

Pope Francis recently shared during a trip to the Diocese of Genoa, “A missionary means letting one’s self be transformed by the Lord. To respond to the needs of people in difficulty, we must first of all love them. We can’t do anything without love.” What I have witnessed this graduation season, is a united student body across all our schools that has chosen hope and love over fear and bitterness. I admire their choice. I am lifted by their indomitable spirit and determination to make a difference in these trying times by honoring and protecting the sanctity of life, respecting the dignity of all co-travelers on the journey of their lives, reaching out to the poor and vulnerable, standing up for religious freedom and by being living examples of peaceful Christian values. God Bless them.

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Bishop Michael R. Cote


The Class of 2017 - Living the Mission





Que La Fé Muestre El Camino La Clase del 2017 - Viviendo la Misión


Mis queridos hermanos y hermanas en Cristo,


Cuatro días después del horrible acto de terror que se llevó la preciosa vida de veintidos víctimas inocentes en Manchester, Inglaterra, yo estaba con la clase del último año de la escuela St. Bernard en su ensayo de graduación. Allí, me encontré cara a cara con estudiantes, muchos de la misma edad de la mayoría de los asistentes al concierto en Manchester. Esto trajo a casa la dura realidad de las aflicciones enfrentadas por todos los jóvenes de hoy en un mundo inestable. ¿Cómo responderían estos jóvenes a otro golpe violento contra la cordura y el amor de los unos a otros? A medida que se desarrollaban las ceremonias de graduación, las respuestas fueron rápidas y resonantes. La fortaleza, el amor y la confianza de nuestros jóvenes misioneros de la esperanza fue bellamente representada por la oradora de la clase, Julia Plunkett. Ella habló de sus desafíos cuando estaba creciendo y como ella fue la primera mujer en su familia que irá a la Universidad. Habló de la fuerza y la unidad de la comunidad de la escuela Saint Bernard. Se centró en lo positivo. En lo esperanzado. En vivir la misión de nuestra fe. En sus palabras, “Podemos ser diferentes, pero nos preocupamos los unos por los otros”. También habló de la influencia duradera de las palabras de guía en la escuela Saint Bernard: humildad, confianza, entusiasmo, compasión y simplicidad. Aquí estaba una voz fuerte y esperanzada que hablaba confidentemente en nombre de la siguiente generación. Sus palabras me recordaron un pasaje de San Pablo a menudo citado por Su Santidad el Papa Francisco: “Que Dios, fuente de toda esperanza, les conceda esa fe que da frutos de alegría y paz, y así se sientan cada día más esperanzados por el poder del Espíritu

Santo” (Romanos 15:13) Ese poder supera las tinieblas y el vacío de los malos actos de terror. La fe claramente trabaja en nuestros estudiantes graduados a medida que se esfuerzan por hacer una diferencia en un mundo que lucha. Mientras yo tuve una oportunidad para decir algunas palabras de validación y estímulo en la noche de la graduación, la noche perteneció a las voces de los jóvenes, fortalecidos con los valores, la educación y el carácter para dar forma a su futuro. En la misma semana no fue ninguna sorpresa escuchar a Monseñor Les Janik, vicario general diocesano, que tuvo la experiencia similar en la graduación de la escuela Xavier. Monseñor había estado presente para escuchar a Mihir Khunte dirigirse a sus compañeros y hablar de su fundación misionera y su “potencial para lograr grandes cosas”. También tuve el privilegio de participar una semana después en la distribución de diplomas de la Academia de la Sagrada Familia y escuchar a Bolu Kuku en su discurso de despedida, reconoció que” …en la Academia, encontré el poder de mirar hacia el futuro.” La clase del 2017 ha entregado un poderoso mensaje de esperanza y resolución para el futuro. Sin duda, este sentimiento también era evidente en las declaraciones formales de Eugenia Cho, de la escuela Mercy, al clasificar al mundo como “incierto”. Preparándose para afrontar ese mundo incierto, dijo,“Mercy, nos ha enseñado a poner importancia a la comunidad y a dejar de lado nuestras diferencias”. En palabras de su compañera de clase y valedictoriana, Jessica Grodovich,” La clase del 2017 es elegante, educada y fuerte-sin miedo y lista para el mundo.” En cada oportunidad, nuestros jóvenes misioneros

de la esperanza expresaron su disposición para seguir valientemente las enseñanzas de Jesucristo y las leccciones y valores de la fe y la comunidad. Como el Papa Francisco compartió recientemente durante un viaje a la Diócesis de Génova, “Un misionero significa dejarse transformar por el Señor, para responder a las necesidades de las personas en dificultades, primero debemos amarlas. No podemos hacer nada sin amor”. He sido testigo en esta temporada de graduación, en todas nuestras escuelas de un cuerpo estudiantil unido que ha elegido la esperanza y el amor sobre el miedo y la amargura. Admiro su elección. Extiendo mi bendición a cada joven y jovencita. Estoy animado por su espíritu indomable y determinación para hacer una diferencia. Con toda seguridad lo harán. Sinceramente en el amor de Cristo,

Michael R. Cote

Obispo de Norwich





lory and praise to our God for blessings upon our diocesan family, especially regarding our seminarians. We give thanks to God for the recent transitional diaconate ordination of Rev. Mr. Frank Gilbert who was ordained June 8, 2017 and is doing his summer service at St. Paul parish in Waterford Connecticut. The ordination Mass was held at St. Mary Czestochowa in Middletown with Frank’s family, friends and brother seminarians all in attendance in addition to the Knights of Columbus and diocesan family gathered for this wonderful evening. Deacon Frank now joins his classmate Deacon Ron Blank as they will now prepare to enter their final year formation at St. John XXIII National Seminary in Weston Massachusetts in September. God willing, both men will be called to priestly ordination by Bishop Cote for service in the diocese in the summer of 2018. Please keep both deacons and all our seminarians in your prayers. We give thanks with great joy also for a wonderful gift received by the vocation office from the kindness of one of our brother priests, Reverend Thomas W. Ahern who died just a year ago on June 16, 2016. Through the estate of Father Ahern, the Vocation Office has received notice that an “irrevocable gift of $57,500.00 has been given to the Catholic Foundation of the Diocese of Norwich. This gift is to be used to establish and to be known as, The Reverend Thomas W. Ahern Seminarian Endowment for the benefit of the Diocese of Norwich Seminarian Fund. Father Tom was a “priest’s priest” to the core, and his

generosity highlights his love of the make an additional gift to assist in seminarians, please consider keeping gift he received in sharing Christ’s the education of our seminarians, the Diocesan Seminarian, Fund priesthood. He will now assist in you may do so at any time through a healthy so we remain well served by solidifying the education of future donation to the Catholic Foundation priests for years to come. priests for the diocese of Norwich and by specifying any one of the As we all move now into the for years to come. Thank you, Father particular endowments listed above. summer months, please in a special Ahern, and may your soul know This is a wonderful way to continue way remember Father Thomas Ahern completely the joy of Christ as you the legacy of priests and laypeople in your prayers along with the others rest in peace. like Father Thomas Ahern, Father mentioned above and offer a prayer If you are not familiar with The Curtin and his sister, Father Talmadge each day for a continued increase of Diocese of Norwich Seminarian and Mabel Enos. priestly vocations for our diocese. Education Fund, it is part of the If you have a priest, religious God bless you all and keep you safe Catholic Foundation of the Diocese sister, brother or family member you this summer. of Norwich which allows us to assist would like to honor by supporting our as fully as possible in paying for the needed education of each of our future priests. The Vocation Office of The Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D., Bishop of Norwich, leads the Holy Hour: the diocese receives each year an annual distribution from the Fund, presently from three Endowments: The Mary E. Curtin and Rev. J. Clifford Curtin Endowment, The Father Robert Talmadge Endowment Fund, and the Mabel Enos English Endowment Fund. It is with great joy that on June 22, August 24th July 20th September 21st 2017 at the annual 6-7pm 6-7pm 6-7pm Catholic Foundation Saint Bernard, Rockville Saint John, Old Saybrook Saint Pius X, Middletown Awards Dinner, we are thrilled to be receiving this year a Father Greg Galvin, Director of Priestly Vocations • • (860) 887-9294 total of $39,598.00! All of these monies are immediately directed towards paying the tuition, room and Deacon Ronald Mr. Michael Mr. Larry Barile Mr. Dharen DEACON Frank Mr. Jacob Ramos MR. Michael Mr. Normand Brochero Castiblanco Blank First year Theology, Gilbert Second year Theology, Bovino Laflamme board costs of sending First year Theology, Fourth year Theology, Pope St. John XXIII Fourth year Theology, Mount Saint Mary Second year Theology, Mount Saint Mary Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary, Pope St. John XXIII Seminary, Emmitsburg, Mount Saint Mary our men to seminaries. Seminary, Emmitsburg, National Seminary, Weston, Massachusetts. National Seminary, Maryland. Seminary, Emmitsburg, Maryland Weston, Massachusetts. Weston, Massachusetts. Maryland. If you desire to

Holy Hour for Vocations

Undergraduate year/ Philosophy TBD

Year of Theology TBD


“Priest’s Priest” Assures Education of Future Priests



“We Are Very Blessed”

Photos and article by Wayne Gignac

Bishop Ordains Deacon

“ “In everyone’s life there are key moments. Key moments - turning points on which our lives

really hinge. I think tonight, Frank, this is one such moment for you as you are altered divinely in a profound way through the laying on of hands.


Bishop Michael R. Cote


Francis J. Gilbert prostrates himself during the Litany of Supplication.


ishop Michael R. Cote, ordained Francis “Frank” Gilbert, on Thursday evening, June 8th at St. Mary of Czestochowa Church in Middletown. The ceremony began with the St. Mary Church choir singing, “Lord You Give the Great Commission” as a twelve member Knights of Columbus Honor Guard led the procession of the Bishop, Priests, Deacons and Seminarians. Continued to next page

Deacon Peter L. Gill embraces newly ordained Deacon Frank J. Gilbert as other deacons standby to welcome him into their ranks. Frank’s son Justin read the First Reading, Acts 6:1, which describes the institution of the Diaconate and the call of the first seven deacons. “So the Twelve called together the community of the disciples and said, “It is not right for us to neglect the word of God to serve at the table. Brothers, select from among you seven reputable men, filled with the Spirit and wisdom, whom we shall appoint to this task.” The Deacon of the Word, Reverend Mr. Ron Blank read the Gospel from Luke 10:1-9- which pronounces how Jesus sent disciples ahead of him in pairs to every town and place he intended to visit. He said to them, “The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few.” Following the Reading of the Gospel, the Rite of Ordination began. Very Reverend Gregory P. Galvin, Director of Vocations, speaking for the church asked the Bishop to ordain

Mr. Frank Gilbert. He went on to testify to Frank’s worthiness. Bishop Cote addressing his Homily to all present, first thanked Frank’s mother for her generosity. The Bishop then directing his remarks specifically to Mr. Gilbert, echoed the message of the first readingthe deacon as a minister of service, “You will be called upon to perform works of charity in my name, the name of the church and in the name of pastors you will serve. From the manner in which you go about these sacred duties, may the faithful recognize in you a true disciple of Christ, who came to serve and not be served.” Frank’s family, friends and fellow parishioners watched as the Bishop continued to address Frank. “Jesus graced His disciples and He graces you tonight, with the Spirit-a source of strength and protection. Rely

Go in “peace,

glorifying the Lord by your life.

Deacon Frank Gilbert receives the Book of the Gospels from Bishop Michael R Cote, D.D. always on this powerful gift. He prays for you-never forget it! Call upon the Spirit often in the course of each day, until when -God willingyou will be called to enter even more deeply into the mystery of the priesthood—His priesthood.” The Bishop paused and with a smile said, “You’re close—God love you—we’re very blessed.” After the homily Frank, standing before the Bishop declared his intentions by answering questions posed by the Bishop in what is known as the Promise of the Elect. As the assembly knelt, Mr. Gilbert then prostrated himself as the Litany of Supplication was sung. He then rose, walked forward and knelt before Bishop Cote who laid hands on Frank’s head, standing there silently for some time, finally breaking the silence with the prayer of ordination. After the prayer of ordination, Reverend Mark D. O’Donnell assisted vesting the newly ordained Deacon Frank Gilbert with his diaconal stole and dalmatic. Once vested, Deacon Frank Gilbert knelt before the Bishop who placed the Book of the Gospels

in his hands saying “Receive the gospel of Christ, whose herald you have become. Believe what you read, teach what you believe, and practice what you teach.” The Bishop then gave Deacon Frank a fraternal kiss. This was followed by the other deacons in attendance also giving their newly ordained brother a fraternal kiss. Deacon Frank took his place at the altar as Deacon of the Eucharist standing to the Bishop’s right for the Liturgy of the Eucharist. Deacon Frank performed the dismissal saying “Go in peace, glorifying the Lord by Your life.” Reverend Mr. Francis J. Gilbert was raised in Portland, Connecticut as one of 11 children. He is a member of the Knights of Columbus Pope John Paul Council # 14017 in Middletown. His seminary formation is at St. John XXIII in Weston, Massachusetts. You can visit Frank all summer long at St. Paul Parish in Waterford where he will be assisting Reverend Joseph B. Whittel, Pastor.





My Experience of the V Encuentro

By: Sister Leidy Castillo Pastoral Associate, St. Mary, Norwich & Sagrado Corazon, Windham




he process of V Encuentro, which is presently taking place throughout the Country, has helped me to open my eyes and my heart and to better understand my mission, not only as a baptized person, but also as a Religious called to walk daily with the Hispanic People in the two parishes where I am privileged to serve. Preparing these parishes to participate in the experience was for me a means of renewing my joy of missionary discipleship. It was a challenging experience, but, nevertheless, a gracefilled time as I was able to experience first-hand the great thirst of our people, just to be listened to, just to know that their church, their pastoral leaders, their brothers and sisters in the faith are really interested in them. Sister Leidy and members of the Sagrado Corazon and St. Mary, Norwich Through the experience of the V with the official cross of the V Encuentro. Encuentro I became more in contact with the people, with their needs, with was a time of faith as I was constantly Encuentro was a means of returning their dreams and their hopes. It was a being challenged to step out into to the Church and re-committing call to look carefully at our pastoral the unknown, not knowing what their lives to Christ. I could feel the plans and activities to see how or the response would be. It called me presence of God moving among us if they are responding to the needs to a deeper level of sacrificial love throughout the day. Our day ended of the people. I was challenged to because of the commitment necessary at the feet of our Eucharistic Lord listen carefully and attentively to the to prepare and carry out each session in an hour of adoration, praise and People of God - really listen to them; with enthusiasm. It was a source of thanksgiving to him for all the graces to help them overcome their fears enrichment for my vocation by its call and blessings poured out upon our about sharing their faith and reaching to deeper prayer, openness to others, parishes during the experience of the out to their brothers and sisters on the and a commitment to put into place V Encuentro. margins and those unconnected with the fruits of this process, with God’s The Encuentros of my two parishes the Faith Community; to motivate grace and for His glory. opened up a new window in my them to live their baptismal call to The process in the parishes personal life and in my apostolate missionary discipleship, and for this, concludes with a gathering, or which makes me ask: Now, where no university degrees are needed – Encuentro. Its purpose is to celebrate do I begin? For me, this is a new just a desire to allow God to work in the achievements of the five-week beginning in our parishes, a new and through us as His dear children, experience and discern concrete stage in my ministry, and there is a loved and sent by Him. action plans for the parish, based on lot to do. The Scriptural text comes The symbols and songs touched the findings of the consultation. The to mind: “The harvest is great but the me deeply and were a means of Encuentros of both of my parishes laborers are few.” (Mt. 9:37). We strengthening my call to missionary are few and the challenges are great, discipleship. Faith, love and vocation was a grace-filled experience for all of us. Particularly moving were but trusting in the Lord and with His are like the flames of a fire which the testimonies of those who had grace, we will be able, as a united must be fanned into flame or they will been impacted by the V Encuentro, family, to reach those in the margins, be extinguished. The V Encuentro especially those for whom the V still waiting to hear the good news of

God’s unconditional love for them. I give thanks to God for permitting me to participate in the process of the V Encuentro, in not one, but in two parishes of our diocese, two completely different parishes, with different needs, but in both a great love of Our Lord and a desire to follow and serve Him. May Our Blessed Mother walk with us and guide us as together we strive to build up the Kingdom of God in our daily life. As with the disciples of Emmaus, I hear in the depth of my soul Our Lord inviting me to return to Jerusalem – my Jerusalem, that is, the parishes of my ministry, to return without fear, in joy, to “announce the joyful news of the Resurrection of Our Savior and to recognize him in the breaking of the bread.” (Lk. 24:13-35).

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l proceso del V Encuentro que se está viviendo en estos momentos en nuestro país, me ha ayudado a abrir más mis ojos y mi corazón y replantear mejor mi misión, no solo como bautizada que soy, sino también como religiosa, que comparte el día a día con la comunidad hispana. He podido compartir con personas que, con gran sacrificio y esmero, han estado preparando cada uno de los momentos del V Encuentro. Al preparar cada una de las parroquias donde el Señor me ha puesto a servir, para participar de este llamado que nos han hecho los obispos, he experimentado la alegría y el gozo de ser discípula misionera. Ha sido un reto grande para llevar a cabo el trabajo, con mucho o poco éxito, solo Dios lo sabe. Pero ha sido un tiempo de gracia en donde, de primera mano, he experimentado cuan sediento está nuestro pueblo de ser escuchado, de tener oportunidades de salir de las sombras para encontrarse con el Señor, con los pastores, y con sus hermanos en la fe. La experiencia del V Encuentro me ha hecho entrar más en

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contacto con el pueblo, con sus necesidades, con los proyectos que debemos implementar en nuestras comunidades. Muchas de ellas quizás conocidas, pero que debemos abarcar en nuestros planes pastorales para una mejor atención y servicio. Pude acercarme más a escuchar al pueblo de Dios, ¡escucharlos!!! y ayudarle a no tener miedo de llegar a otros hermanos que viven en las periferias. Motivarlos a ejercer ese llamado que hemos recibido desde el bautismo a ser discípulos misioneros y que para eso no se necesitan títulos universitarios, sino simplemente dejar a Dios actuar en nosotros como sus hijos amados y enviados. Los signos y cantos de este proceso llegaron directo a mi corazón como brazas encendidas que animan a seguir fortaleciendo mi llamado vocacional. Porque la fe, el amor y la vocación son como el fuego que se debe alimentar para que nunca se apague. El V Encuentro ha sido un tiempo de fe porque no sabía cómo iba a responder la gente en las parroquias. Ha sido un tiempo


de amor y sacrificio para llevar a cabo cada sesión con entusiasmo, preparación y entrega. Ha sido un tiempo de alimentar mi vocación desde la oración, la escucha y la apertura al trabajo que después de este proceso debemos emprender con la gracia de Dios y para su mayor gloria. En los Encuentros Parroquiales de las dos parroquias dónde ejerzo mi ministerio, pude experimentar algo que no se puede decir con palabras. Solo Dios lo sabe, pero fueron momentos de gran bendición donde pude compartir la fe, escuchar los testimonios de las personas, especialmente jóvenes adultos que a través del V Encuentro han vuelto a la Iglesia. Y en todo momento sentir y palpar la forma en que Dios fue fluyendo, a lo largo de los encuentros, que terminaron frente a la presencia viva y real de Jesús en el Santísimo Sacramento. Al terminar esa etapa del V Encuentro, di gracias a Dios porque se vio un trabajo en equipo, un trabajo coordinado donde muchas personas hicieron poco y no pocos haciendo mucho. Sentí el amor de las personas que quieren hacer de la parroquia una familia unida. Con los encuentros

parroquiales se abrió una nueva ventana en mi vida personal y en mi apostolado en la que me pregunto: ¿Y ahora, por dónde empiezo? Porque para mí es un iniciar una nueva etapa donde hay mucho que hacer, como dice la escritura: “La mies es mucha y los obreros pocos”(Mt. 9, 37). Pero confiando en el Señor y con su gracia, podremos, como familia unida, llegar a aquellos que se han alejado o enfriado de la iglesia. Doy gracias a Dios por permitirme participar del proceso del V Encuentro en dos parroquias de nuestra diócesis, con realidades muy diferentes y necesidades diversas, pero en ambas un amor a nuestro Señor y un deseo de seguirlo y servirlo. Que la Virgen María interceda en nuestro diario caminar para que juntos construyamos el reino de Dios en el diario vivir. Escucho en mi interior como el Señor me invita a volver como lo hizo con los discípulos de Emaús, volver a Jerusalén, sin miedo, con alegría, para anunciar la alegría de la Resurrección de Nuestro Salvador y reconocerlo al partir el pan (Lc. 24, 13-35).

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“Our Faith Calls Us to Action” Volunteer – Brian Cawley

The theme for the 2017 ACA is “Our Faith Calls US to ACTION”. Each month we feature someone who supports our Diocesan Ministries by following this motto.


By Kathy Gaito



rian Cawley has been volunteering since moving to Connecticut in 1978. Since December of 2014, he has served as the Chairman of the Board at St. Mary-St. Joseph School in Willimantic, Connecticut. While all of his volunteerism has been impactful, his passion and vision of his role as Board Chair at St. MarySt. Joseph School can be felt in his words… “The more time I spend at St. Mary-St. Joseph School and the more activities and events I attend, the more people I interact with and get to know. This includes our Sisters and Priests, as well as parents, and of course our amazing and awesome students. Our school cannot exist in a vacuum and so my duties also call for me to interact with the public beyond

the walls of the school which has expanded my circle of contacts and those I interact with on a regular basis.” “Public relations, marketing and development are critical to our school now and in the future. Interacting with others in these areas has given me an opportunity to share what an exceptional school we have, whether it be our excellent academic program, our TSA (Technology Student Association), our school Plays, our “Buddy” program (pairing upper grade children with lower), or our PE and sports programs (basketball and soccer). This has helped me to share the good news about our excellent students, faculty, staff and programs. Recently, I had the good fortune to attend our school’s production of Oz. It was a delightful show attended by all of the students in the school, the faculty and staff and any parents and clergy that could make it. I had a great seat very close to the stage but more importantly right near the Pre-K and kindergarten children. (My wife volunteers with this group as well.) It was a true gift to be able to see the faces of our youngest as they reacted to the Tin Man - frozen by rust, or the fearful and cowardly Lion frightened by even little Toto (also a student actor), or the hideous threats and piercing laughs of the wicked Witch of the West. The show was wonderful but I am not sure which I enjoyed more, the children in the audience mesmerized by the actors or the show itself. These events take many hours of hard work and practice and push our students to be the best they can be. Preparation for these types of events can be exhausting

but the effort is worth it as it creates a strong sense of community, pride and a feeling of belonging to a faith based school community that all will remember for a long time, if not for a lifetime, and one of which I am very proud to be a part.” Some of Brian’s earlier volunteer roles included serving (along with his wife, Donna) as a presenting couple on Marriage Encounter weekends and then in leadership positions for about 10 years. He and his wife have also been involved in marriage preparation training for engaged couples at the parish level. In addition, they helped to establish a Parish Life Committee, taught Baptism and Confirmation classes, were active in children’s liturgy and RCIA for adults in the parishes they have been a part of in our Diocese (St. Mary, Coventry and currently St. Joseph, Willimantic). Not being afraid to try new things, Brian attended an ACTS retreat which provided him with the opportunity to meet other men and bond with them in the Catholic faith. This inspired Brian to serve the ACTS retreat movement as a leader of the local board. There he helped to create the present state structure, ACTS Chapter, serving as its president for several years. Brian’s advice to others who are thinking about volunteering is, “Do what you think you can handle in a small way, and what is within your gifts and talents, so that it is a positive experience for you and your family. Read the bulletin and respond to one of the requests to help in whatever way you can. You will meet new people, share your love with those you meet and get His grace all at the same time. What a win, win, win.”

Thank you Brian Cawley from all of us here at the Diocese of Norwich for your volunteerism. You are truly appreciated! Volunteers are vital to our ministries that are supported by the time, talent and treasures of people in our Diocese. Your support and the support of others allows our ministries to continue their service to our community. Thank you for hearing and responding to: “Our Faith Calls US to ACTION”!

Prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mar�

O Most Beautif�l Flower of Mt. Car�el, Fr�itf�l Vine, Splendor of Heaven, Blessed Mother of the Son of God, Immaculate Virgin, assist me in my necessit�. O Star of the Sea, help me and show me herein you are my Mother. O Holy Mar�, Mother of God, Queen of Heaven and Ear�h, I humbly beseech you f�om the bot�om of my hear� to succor me in my necessit�. There are none that can withstand your power. O Mar� conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.

Holy Mar�, I place this cause in your hands.

~ JP ~


CALENDAR OF EVENTS June 21—July 4, 2017

Tuesday, August 8

Sixth Fortnight for Freedom

Catholic Youth & Family Day at Six Flags New England

Friday, June 23 Catholic Charities Baseball Game Tigers VS. Aberdeen Iron birds at Dodd Stadium. Come for the game, stay for the fireworks! Individual and group tickets can be purchased by calling Sue Connelly at 860-889-8346, ext. 264. Tickets are $10. For more information please call Christine Jackel at 860-8861926 • ext. 12

Sunday, July 30 Blessing of the Fleet Bishop Cote will celebrate Mass at 10:30am in St. Mary Church, after which a parade will wind its way through the streets of Stonington Borough. There will be a small ceremony at the Town Dock where the boats will be blessed and prayers offered for those fishermen lost at sea. A procession of boats will make their way past the breakwater in Long Island Sound and a wreath in the shape of a broken anchor will be cast into the sea. Meanwhile, back at the dock, there will be food and soft drinks available for sale. Kids activities are being planned and music will be provided by Double Play.

Pope Francis @Pontifex

I thank God for parents who strive to live in love and keep moving forward, even if they fall many times along the way.

Hosted by the Diocese of Springfield. Special package price of only $43.24 includes park admission, a buffet lunch, and free parking. Tickets can be purchased online at sixflags. com/newengland using promo code: Catholicday17. For more information, call Joanne McCormick at 413-786-9300 x3524.

Pentecost Birthday of The Church

A Healing Mass and a Healing Service Sacred Heart Church, 550 Hartford Tpke, Vernon Sunday, June 4 at 2pm Mass – Healing Service 3-5pm

8 Week Life in the Spirit Seminar

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Sacred Heart Church, 550 Hartford Tpke, Vernon Begins Wednesday June 7, from 7:30 - 9pm It will change your life for the better!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Television Mass

Father Ray Introvigne At 10:00am Channel 11 WCCT Comcast Channel 20 WTXX Charter

Immaculata Retreat House A Ministry of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate 289 Windham Rd., Rte. 32 Willimantic, Connecticut

Masses of Healing and Hope

2nd and 4th Mondays, June 12 & 26, July 10 & 24 at 2pm Spiritual Renewal Center

Mass of Healing & Hope and Healing Service

Sunday, June 25, from 2- 5pm St. Thomas the Apostle, 872 Farmington Ave., West Hartford Mass 2-3pm, Healing Service 3-5pm Prayer Teams – Individual Prayer and Anointing

Television Mass

Wednesday, July 5 at 10am Channel 11 WCCT – Comcast Channel 20 WTXX – Charter Celebrant – Fr. Ray Introvigne Music Ministry – Brother and Sisters of Charity


Materials for the observance of the Fortnight for Freedom can be found on the website, www.fortnightforfreedom. org.

“I know well the PLANS (my concern for you) I have in mind for YOU (your name) PLANS for YOUR WELFARE, not for woe when YOU ‘seek Me’ with ALL your heart, YOU will find Me with YOU and ‘I WILL CHANGE YOUR CIRCUMSTANCES!”



Outreach to Haiti Gala 2017

Auxiliary Bishop Toussaint’s Remarks


Those of us at the Outreach to Haiti Gala on April 29th, had the privilege of hearing the inspirational words of the Most Reverend Erik Toussaint, Auxiliary Bishop of Port-au-Prince. For those not fortunate enough to be there, following are more of his comments from that evening.


“Father Frank, my brother priests, all who support the work of Outreach to Haiti, all of you gathered here tonight: Good Evening! I am very happy to have been invited to speak with you this evening at this wonderful Gala. I have come to thank you for the great work that is being done through the Diocese of Norwich Outreach to Haiti. Thank you also because you continue to speak with your heart each time you stretch out your hand to help someone else. As we hear in the Gospel of Matthew (Mt. 25: 31-46): “I was hungry and you gave me food; I was thirsty and you gave me to drink….. Whatever you did for the least of my people, you did for me…” This is what Jesus tells us. As Auxiliary Bishop of Port-auPrince, I presently serve as President of Caritas Haiti. I know well the problems and suffering of the Haitian people. When natural catastrophes occur such as earthquakes, hurricanes, flooding and situations involving people going hungry, children unable to attend school, wide-spread disease and people with no home in which to sleep, a bad situation suddenly becomes worse. During the earthquake of 2010, I witnessed the death of Archbishop Serge Miot and our Vicar General, Monsignor Charles Benoit. Many choir members also died that day inside the cathedral as well as many religious who were praying in the parish chapel of Perpetual Help, in the Belair section of Port-au-Prince. Many problems immediately arose: I

spent a lot of time removing people who were near death. It was not an easy time. I spent six months, at times with nothing to eat, sleeping under a tent, because the rectory was badly damaged. Then a group of bandits began stealing what was left in the rectory and set fire to the building. However, despite all of this, I was never discouraged. I continued to work to help those who were in much greater need. This same type of work was carried out by all who love and care for the people of Haiti. Many did what they could to ease the suffering of others. Certainly, all of you who are part of Outreach to Haiti stepped up and whole-heartedly did what you could, reflecting the love you have for the Haitian people. What made this work possible was all of the donations Outreach received from all of your benefactors and supporters who join you in your care and concern for Haiti. You gave what you had to help us in this difficult time. This is a great gift as it reflects our call to share what God has given us with those who suffer and are in need, especially the children and those who are abandoned. As Pope Francis once said: “We are to bring the caress of the Church, our mother, to those who are suffering.” I ask you who are here this evening: Do you want to do this? I ask that you continue to act in this way as you share what you have. Bring that caress to others. In this way, your hearts will be filled with joy. As God’s Word tells us that there is more joy in giving than in

receiving. In 2010, Haiti experienced a great earth quake. This evening, in 2017, I am asking you to experience a “heart quake”. Let your heart tremble for all who suffer throughout the world, especially the people of Haiti. Let your heart tremble before all of the calamities occurring throughout the world. In Luke’s Gospel (16: 19-31) we find the story of the Rich Man. This parable asks us to become aware of those who suffer. The name Lazarus is of Greek origin which translates “God is my help”. In this story it is not food and money that Jesus condemns, it is self-centeredness and hardness of heart, because the rich man closed his eyes in the face of Lazarus, who was suffering in front of his gate. However, God came to the aid of Lazarus, God saw his great suffering. Now, God is asking each of you to look and see those who are sick and suffering today - the great suffering of so many throughout the world. Through responding in this way, Outreach to Haiti is helping others through: • Providing medical care to all who come to your clinic in the Kris Wa section of Port-au-Prince. • Providing education to more than 230 children enrolled in elementary, secondary, trade schools and universities. Each child reflects the wonder of God here on earth. Look at the wonderful work you are doing through this education program! • The support that you give to parishes and the Archdiocese of Port-au-Prince.

There is a priest working in St. Jude’s parish in Grande Savane, where I was born. His parish is not yet part of Outreach to Haiti Parish Twinning. He is hoping that one day this will change. Yet that doesn’t stop him from being grateful for all that this program is doing, for the difference this makes throughout the Archdiocese of Port-auPrince. Tonight, I don’t applaud you because of the money you give; rather I applaud you because of the love in your hearts which allows you to reflect the mercy of God. This is the greatest gift of all, everything else flows from it. I can say to you now, this is what Outreach is doing: uniting your spirituality with material well-being. You go forth to serve others in love and solidarity as witnesses of the Gospel. Thank you for all that you are for the world; for the Church in the United States and in Haiti; for all who live in poverty and need.

May God bless you! May God bless America! Thank you very much!”


Weather Doesn’t Deter Faithful Uncasville; and Monsignor Robert L. Brown, Chancellor, who celebrated Mass in the Mausoleum Chapel at Saint Mary Cemetery, New London. The service in Norwich ended with those in attendance standing silently as trumpeter Gordon Conrad played “Taps”. We are honored to remember the many brave men and women who have given their lives throughout the history of our great Nation, those who made the ultimate sacrifice to protect us from harm. We are deeply grateful for all those now serving and we raise our prayers for their safety and blessing.

“The voices of prayer in the silence of a cemetery can be louder in many ways than the sounds of a ceremonial rifle salute”


ST. MARY CHAPEL MAUSOLEUM Reverend Tomasz Albrecht, Monsignor Anthony S. Rosaforte and Reverend Peter Langevin look on as Bishop Michael R. Cote delivers the homily at the Memorial Day service held at the St. Mary and St. Joseph Cemetery Community Mausoleum on Boswell Avenue in Norwich on Monday, May 29th .


t would take more than a driving rain and 50-degree temperature to stop the more than 50 faithful in Norwich who came out to honor those who had died in military service to our Country. The Memorial Mass that was scheduled to be held outdoors at St. Joseph Cemetery was moved indoors to the St. Mary and St. Joseph Cemetery Community Mausoleum, where Bishop Michael R. Cote celebrated one of several Memorial Masses being held throughout the Diocese. Bishop Cote began his homily by addressing a young serviceman in the group, “We pray for you and your fellow servicewomen and men who dedicate your lives for our Country. We pray for you.” He then continued,

“Through our merit today, memorial services are being held, wreathes are being placed at holy tombs. As a Nation, we honor our military men and women who give their lives in service to our Country, not only in past wars but those who today dedicate themselves to our freedom all over the world.” Following distribution of Holy Communion, vocalist Carroll Mailhot led the entire group in a moving rendition of “Let There Be Peace on Earth”. Other services that were held around the Diocese included Monsignor Henry N. Archambault, P.A., J.C.D., who celebrated Mass in Sacred Heart Church, Taftville; Reverend Robert Buongirno who celebrated Mass at Saint John Church,


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Choosing God’s Plan for Marriage


By Mary-Jo McLaughlin


hoosing God’s plan for marriage rather than the world’s plan was at the root of Chad and Sara Estabrooks’ decision to practice natural family planning (NFP) when they married seven years ago. Today, they are one of three certified NFP instruction couples in the diocese. Natural Family Planning embraces God’s plan for married love because it respects the life-giving aspect of marital intimacy, the Estabrooks said. “Practicing NFP respects our bodies, each other and our marriage,” Sara added, noting that it allows God to be part of the decisions they make about family planning. Natural Family Planning is an umbrella term for the safe, natural, 99 percent effective and scientifically reliable methods of both achieving and avoiding pregnancy. Couples practicing NFP learn how to interpret and chart signs in a woman’s cycle to determine when she would be fertile or infertile. To avoid pregnancy, couples would abstain from marital intimacy during a woman’s fertile time. The Estabrooks received their certification as a NFP teaching couple last summer through the Couple to Couple League (CCL), a

non-profit organization promoting NFP worldwide. “We were the go-to couple among our friends for questions about NFP,” said Sara. “We pursued certification because we wanted to make sure we had the right answers to give them.” “So many women are negatively affected by unnatural forms of birth control,” Chad said. “There are no side effects from NFP and no harm to the woman’s body.” Sara, a cradle Catholic, learned about NFP from her parents who practiced NFP and instilled in her at an early age an appreciation for the beauty of God’s natural design of a woman’s body and its ability to create life. Through their example, Sara knew she wanted the same for her marriage and a relationship where both she and her husband would respect each other’s bodies and the love-giving and life-giving nature of

marriage. The Estabrooks met when they were both majoring in mathematics at Eastern Connecticut State University. While they were dating, Chad was received into the Catholic faith. When they got engaged, they both read a home-study book on NFP published through CCL, which sold Chad on its positive benefits. “This was what I wanted for our marriage,” he said. Both see NFP as a vital component in their desire to live a sacramental lifestyle with God at the center of their relationship. They have used NFP to postpone pregnancy and to conceive their three children, Eli, age 5; Lexi, age 4; and Faith, age 2. They have also relied on NFP to help them navigate through postpartum transitions and, most recently, they are using it to identify medical issues related to Sara’s monthly cycle. Another positive benefit the couple sees in practicing NFP is the effect it



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has had on their communication and pathways of conversation with one another. “It has opened us up to talk about difficult and uncomfortable things,” said Sara. It has also allowed them to develop other ways of expressing their tenderness and affection, reminiscent of their courtship days, during times of abstinence. “I feel strongly about the positive impact NFP has had on us and the level of respect within our relationship as a result,” Chad said He added, “We want to spread the word about what we have found and show by our example why this is good for marriage,” he said. The Estabrooks join Craig and Liz Schantz of Gales Ferry and Steve and Lisa Collison of Old Saybrook as one of three certified CCLI NFP instructors offering courses throughout the year in the diocese. The course is a three-part monthly series of classes. To register for classes, couples can visit the CCLI website at or, for more information on additional NFP methods, call the Diocesan Catholic Family Services Office at 860-848-2237, ext 306.


By Mary Ellen Mahoney Many parents throughout our Diocese thank God every day for the wonderful education their children receive at our Catholic elementary schools. The exceptional teaching, moral development and passion for community service are hallmarks of our Diocesan schools and appreciated by many. This gratitude is shared by Loretta and Colin Rice, parishioners of St. Joseph Church, Willimantic who sent their 3 boys and 1 daughter to St. Mary – St. Joseph School in Willimantic. Married for 47 years this coming August and residents of Lebanon, the Rices have always placed their faith and children’s education at the center of their family. Colin and Loretta commented, “ We appreciated our Catholic education, reinforcing the values we learned at home. We wanted that same support for our 4 children when we raised them. Fortunately, St. Mary - St. Joseph School was there to fulfill our wish.”. This Spring, Colin and Loretta decided to make a permanent commitment to St. Mary – St. Joseph School by establishing an endowment within the Catholic Foundation of the Diocese of Norwich, Inc. for the benefit of the school. The Colin and Loretta Rice Endowment Fund is the Rices’ way of helping to ensure that St. Mary- St. Joseph School will continue to be able to provide area children with the fine Catholic education that their four children, Keith, Nancy, Christopher and Colin Reggie received. Establishing an endowment was not easy but well worth it for Colin and Loretta, “It took many years to build an endowment. But we persisted and now we can be sure our support for SMSJ will continue into the future...” As an endowment, the fund will live on in

Colin and Loretta Rice with grandchildren, Alison, Julia and Jacob. perpetuity, with its earnings being distributed to St. Mary- St. Joseph School on an annual basis. Speaking on behalf of Bishop Michael R. Cote and the Board of Directors of the Catholic Foundation of the Diocese of Norwich, Angela Arnold, Executive Director of The Catholic Foundation, happily confirmed that on March 17, 2017, the Catholic Foundation entered into an agreement with Colin and Loretta Rice establishing the Colin and Loretta Rice Endowment Fund for the benefit of St. Mary – St. Joseph Church. Angela Arnold shared her own personal insight when she commented, “ I am so thrilled that the Rices have chosen to support St. Mary- St. Joseph School through an endowment with the Catholic Foundation. Personally, I received a Catholic education and was able to give my daughter the same wonderful experience. The Rices’ commitment will help more children to receive a Catholic education as well.” Abby Demars, Principal of St.

Mary- St. Joseph School is extremely thankful that the Rices chose to support St. Mary- St. Joseph School in such a generous and permanent way, “The timing of this gift could not be any better as it provides us a cornerstone for our development work. In January, our new School Board began development work in earnest as part of the 3-year Strategic Plan we are putting together with the assistance of Catholic School Management. It is thanks to people like Colin and Loretta that we are able to put our plan into action where we serve a multicultural community providing students with a Christcentered education in the tradition of the Roman Catholic Church.” The Colin and Loretta Rice Endowment is the Catholic Foundation’s 23rd endowment. Since its inception in 1998, the Catholic Foundation has provided a place where both individuals and parishes may invest their money in the form of an endowment and thereby provide ongoing support for organizations

and people within our Diocese. First envisioned by Bishop Daniel Hart, the Catholic Foundation‘s mission is to provide a mechanism for the establishment of endowments to benefit the Diocese of Norwich and its parishes, schools, agencies and organizations. The Foundation, through its Board of Directors, invests the assets and distributes earnings according to the wishes of the donors, in accordance with its Spending Policy. The establishment of endowments provides greater financial stability and growth for our Diocese and its organizations. Many private individuals have established endowments within the Catholic Foundation to support their special interests. Most recently, Mr. and Mrs. Michael Lynch established the Our Lady of Lourdes Parish Endowment. Just prior to that, Jacqueline Keller, former Diocesan Director of Communications established the Margaret L. Keller Catholic Charities Heritage Endowment, in honor of her mother, to support Catholic Charities. Each year, the earnings of this endowment will be used to assist single mothers break the cycle of dependence by continuing their education. Others have established endowments to help their favorite Catholic school in the form of tuition scholarships. For example, the William F. Jr. and Flora L. O’Neil Scholarship Fund disburses tuition assistance to two St. Bernard School students each year. There are a number of ways people may structure their endowments. An endowment may be set up to support more than one organization. For instance, The Eugene and Anne O’Neill Endowment Fund divides its earnings each year to provide funds to both St. James Church, Danielson and Mercy High Continued onto page 28


Love for School Leads to 23rd Catholic Foundation Endowment

7 15

They that hope in the Lor their strength, the


Isaiah 40:31




rd will renew ey will soar on eagles’ wings.




Procession Honors Our Lady of Fatima

Photo and article by Wayne Gignac early 150 donned in white capes, took turns parishioners and carrying the image of Our Lady friends of St. Mary of Fatima through the streets of Church, processed the Borough as Bishop Michael through the streets of Stonington R. Cote led the recitation of the Borough on June 3, 2017. At the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary. In front of this Candlelit Procession between the decades of the rosary, was a life-size statue of Our Lady members of the Portuguese of Fatima positioned on a bed of community sang traditional white carnations atop a wooden hymns. Returning to the platform. A group of men, Church, the faithful participated

in Benediction followed by a social in the church hall. The Candlelit procession was preceded by a Mass in Honor of Our Lady of Fatima. Bishop Cote concelebrated Mass with Very Reverend Dennis M. Perkins, Monsignor Richard P. LaRocque and Reverend Gregoire J. Fluet.




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n May 19th, 20th and 21st, the parishioners of Saint Sebastian Church in Middletown celebrated the feast of their Patron Saint, Saint Sebastian. The Feast of Saint Sebastian pays tribute to the soldier born in the middle of the third century. He was raised in the Christian faith. As a young man, he served as a legionary in Rome. Sebastian was killed because he refused to deny his Christian faith and took it upon himself to visit fellow Christians in prison and encouraged them to stand fast in their faith in the face of torture and death. His martyrdom occurred approximately in the year 287. In the year, 1414, during a ship wreck off the coast of Sicily, a statue

of Saint Sebastian, enclosed in a trunk, washed up on shore from the sunken vessel. A group of clergy and the faithful from Melilli easily lifted the trunk and deposited it where the

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In the early 1900’s, it is said that there were more immigrants from Melilli living in Middletown than in Melilli! The feast weekend, began on Friday night with a carnival, refreshments and music by local musicians. Saturday’s Solemn Mass, celebrated by Saint Sebastian’s Pastor, Reverend James Thaikoottathil began with the unveiling of the Statue of Saint Sebastian. On Sunday, the 8:00am Mass was celebrated in Italian and at 11:00am a Solemn Pontifical Mass in Honor of Saint Sebastian was celebrated by His Excellency, Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, Bishop of Norwich. As has been the tradition since the 1970’s in Middletown, the Nuri or runners, arrived at the church to pay homage to Saint Sebastian.

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Catholic Charities, Diocese of Norwich is extremely grateful for the generosity of the employees of the Savings Institute Bank & Trust. On Thursday, May 26, 2017 through their annual “Caring & Giving” Campaign, Barry Shead, Assistant Vice President/Branch Manager of the Savings Institute Bank & Trust, in Norwich presented Edward J. Tessman, Executive Director, Catholic Charities, Diocese of Norwich with a generous check to help those in need in the communities where the Savings Institute Bank & Trust branches are located. Catholic Charities is thankful for their partnership, community awareness and contribution. Ed Tessman stated, “we are very pleased to have such a generous community partner that enables us to “Provide Help and Create Hope” to those most in need throughout Eastern Connecticut.”

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Louise Mlodzinski Bequeaths Over $1,000,000 for St. Bernard Cemetery Improvements and Maintenance By Amy Blanchard

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Trust your child to a Catholic School where faith, knowledge and life meet. Come visit us! 


Rockville- St. Bernard Cemetery, which serves the area Catholic communities of St. Matthew, St. Luke, St. Joseph, St. Maurice, Sacred Heart and St. Bernard, will be undertaking major improvements because of a gift of over $1,000,000 to St. Bernard Cemetery by Louise Mlodzinski who passed away July 5, 2015 at the age of 99. Disbursement of the gift was recently approved by the Probate Court. Louise handled the accounting for the former Starr Hardware location in Rockville and formed her own florist and gift shop adjacent to them, known as Starr Flower Shop. Louise had many talents and was a very hardworking, dedicated businesswoman who was well known to the Rockville community. The gift will be used to fulfill specific improvement requests of Louise in the historic section of St. Bernard Cemetery with the balance going to a perpetual care fund for long term maintenance of the historic section. Specific projects in the historic section recently started include: • Removal of the chain link fence and removal of trees along the fence line • Installation of a new wrought iron fence with three wrought iron gates • New sign for the front center of the

historic section after the existing sign is moved to the new section off Kingsbury Avenue • Installation of water lines with new hydrants • Removal of old interior cement curbing • Repair of rear drains • Installation of new granite section markers for easier section identification • Paving of the roadway Father Richard J. Ricard noted, “this is an incredibly generous and welcome gift to enhance, restore and perpetually maintain the historic section of our cemetery by a person who honored the true purpose of a Catholic cemetery to respectfully bury the dead as a Corporal Work of Mercy to bear witness to Christ and await the resurrection of the body into everlasting life.” In addition, the Town of Vernon was given permission last summer to install drainage through our new road to alleviate water collection problems on Kingsbury Avenue. The Town of Vernon also installed an underground pipe at that time with rope to eventually bring power to the middle of the cemetery and the new section road was repaved at no cost to the cemetery. As a result of the establishment of a Louise Mlodzinski’s trust for future historic section maintenance, more operating funds will be available for the new section of the cemetery. A new Cemetery Committee has been formed to plan the future development of the cemetery in keeping with the sacred purpose of a Catholic cemetery. Plans are underway to develop the future cemetery to include cremation columbaria with additional parking and easy access to the new altar in the historic section, which is centrally located in the full cemetery.


Our YOUTH Sacred Heart School, Groton

Mr. Lawrence Fitzgerald, Principal 50 Sacred Heart Drive, Groton, CT 860-445-0611

Sacred Heart School, Taftville

Mother Christina Van Beck, SCMC, Principal 15 Hunters Ave, Taftville, CT

Phone: 860-887-1757

St. Edward School, Stafford Springs

St. James School, Danielson Linda Marie Joya, Principal 120 Water St, Danielson, CT Phone: 860-774-3281

Mrs. MaryAnne Pelletier, Principal 25 Church St, Stafford Springs, CT Phone: 860-684-2600

Academic Excellence. Character. Self-Confidence.


St. Bernard Graduate David Galvez Drums His Way to Berklee


By Judy Benson, The Day


pening with a plaintive trumpet solo flowing into reverent melodies from the chorus and band, “I Fly to You” then bursts into a percussive torrent of snare drum, tympani and bass drum. It’s no happenstance that the piece, commissioned by the Saint Bernard School music department for the students’ performance for Pope Francis at the Vatican last winter, features a percussion interlude. Caitlin Meyer, the school’s music director, asked composer Gary Glackstatter to include it to showcase the talents of David Galvez, a senior from New London who graduated with his classmates on Friday. “He’s always been very, very talented,” Meyer said, during a break from dress rehearsal for the school concert earlier this month. “It comes naturally to him. But over his time here, he’s really grown a lot as a performer, learning different instruments and learning to read music. It speaks to his commitment to

David Galvez, a senior at Saint Bernard School, practices the drums on Wednesday, May 24, 2017, at the school in Montville. He will be attending Berklee School of Music in Boston next year to study percussion. (Sarah Gordon/The Day)

his craft.” As he snapped his snare drum during the rehearsal, Galvez, 17, the older of Erica Agreda and Roberto Galvez’s two children, was all about focus and precision, pursing his bottom lip as he kept his eyes trained on his music and the conductor while letting his wrists fly with the wings of his drumsticks. Off stage and away from his instrument, Galvez is genuinely humble, eager to tell how grateful he is to the people who’ve supported him along the way. “I really want to thank my parents and Ms. Meyer,” he said, before rehearsing with the chorus, where he sings bass. “They really played a big part in my life. They believed in me.” His mother said her son has always known he wanted to pursue music as a career, setting his sights at a young age on one day attending the Berklee College of Music in Boston. She knew getting accepted there would be tough, but he’s risen to the challenges at Saint Bernard, so she didn’t dissuade him. This spring -continued on next page

St. Joseph School, North Grosvenordale

Ms. Sharon Briere, Principal 26 Main St., N. Grosvenordale, CT Phone: 860-923-2090

St. Mary-St. Joseph School, Willimantic

Ms. Abby Demars, Principal 35 Valley St, Willimantic, CT Phone: 860-423-8479

St. Michael School, Pawcatuck

Mrs. Doris Messina, Principal

63 Liberty St, Pawcatuck, CT Phone: 860-599-1084

St. Patrick School, Norwich

Mrs. Catherine Reed, Principal 211 Broadway, Norwich, CT Phone: 860-889-4174

OUR YOUTH Dr. Darryl Bullock, Principal 87 South Main St, Middletown, CT Phone: 860-347-2978

he auditioned for the school and will be attending there in the fall, planning to major in music production and engineering while continuing to perform. “I’m very proud for my son,” she said. “He’s doing everything good for us.” She and her husband emigrated from Peru in 1998, she said, and make a modest living from their jobs, she as owner of a housecleaning business and her husband as a cook at Mr. G’s restaurant in New London. Without scholarship aid from Saint Bernard, she said, they wouldn’t have been able to afford the tuition for their son. While she is grateful for the lives they’ve established here, Agreda said she never wanted David or his 10-year-old sister, Fabiola, to forget their family’s roots. David recalled how his mother would give him Spanish lessons after he came home from elementary school in New London, and formed Yawar Llajta, a Peruvian folk dance group he performed with and now helps teach. This summer, he’ll be busy performing with his father’s band, Grupo Tentacion, playing drums and timbales for gigs at local restaurants, and private parties and venues around the state. The sevenmember ensemble, which includes his uncle Edgar Agreda and three singers, has a loyal following for its lively dance St. Bernard School, Uncasville

Mr. Donald Macrino, Headmaster 1593 Norwich-New London Tpke, Uncasville, CT Phone: 860-848-1271

St. Joseph School, Baltic

St. John Paul II School, Middletown

Sr. Mary Patrick Mulready, SCMC, Principal

10 School Hill Road, Baltic, CT Phone: 860-822-6141

music, with more than 400 fans signed up for its Facebook page. David joined the band at age 8, starting on bongos while his father played keyboards, learning by ear what would become his favorite style. “Salsa is definitely my favorite,” he said. “It has a feeling I can’t find in any other music.” David joined the soccer team in his freshman year. “The soccer team is like another family he said. “Being part of that team was the best thing that happened to me.” He’s also become a leader among his classmates, serving as vice president of the Tri-M Music Honor Society and organizing a coffeehouse in New London

St. Joseph School, New London

Ms. Marianne Cote, Principal 25 Squire St, New London, CT Phone: 860-442-1720

Principal Vacancy Sacred Heart School, Groton, CT

Located in Groton, CT, Sacred Heart School is a parish co-educational Catholic school of all faiths from Pre-Kindergarten to Grade 8, seeks a principal to begin July 1, 2017. Accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Sacred Heart School provides an exceptional educational program that places emphasis on the spiritual, intellectual, physical, and aesthetic development of each student. The eligible candidate will be a practicing Roman Catholic in good standing in the Church, hold a minimum of a masters’ degree in education and have completed at least five years of teaching experience and two years’ administrative experience, preferably in a Catholic school. He or she must be able to direct a joyful Catholic school faith community where every student has daily opportunities to encounter the love of God in Jesus Christ. He or she will value the importance of moral character development, self-discipline, and Christian service. He or she will be able to guide the faculty as a professional learning community and promote 21st century and learning research-based practices with an emphasis on STREAM instruction and personalized learning. He or she will model life-long learning. The position also requires outstanding verbal and written communication skills, professional experience in supervision and evaluation, and an understanding of enrollment management, institutional advancement, and Catholic school finance stewardship. Information about the school may be found at Download application and candidate forms at under the employment tab

in April where he and other Saint Bernard musicians and poets performed. He even arranged a jazz piece for the occasion. “It was a packed house,” Meyers recalled. “David performed this massive drum solo, which was really impressive. He just has that drive that comes from inside.”

Academy of the Holy Family, Baltic

Mother Mary David, SCMC, Principal 54 West Main St, Baltic, CT Phone: 860-822-9272

Marianapolis Preparatory School, Thompson

Mr. Joseph Hanrahan, Headmaster 26 Chase Road, Thompson, CT Phone: 860-923-9565

Send completed candidate forms by June 23, 2017 to: Sacred Heart Principal Search Attn: Mr. Henry Fiore, Jr. Superintendent of Schools Diocesan School Office 43 Perkins Avenue Norwich, CT 06360

Mercy High School, Middletown

Mary McCarthy, RSM, President 1740 Randolph Road, Middletown, CT Phone: 860-346-6659

Xavier High School, Middletown

Brother Brian Davis, C.F.X, Headmaster Mr. Brendan Donohue, Principal 181 Randolph Road, Middletown, CT Phone: 860-346-7735


St. John School, Old Saybrook

Mother Elaine Moorcroft, SCMC, Principal 42 Junenard Road, Old Saybrook, CT Phone: 860-388-0849


Our YOUTH From the Superintendent’s Office…..

St. Pius X Honors Henry Fiore, Jr. For His Service


My Dear Friends,


Just short of one year ago, I was blessed to be appointed as Superintendent of Schools for the Diocese of Norwich. In this past year, I have grown to love this diocese and every school in it. I have met a tremendous number of people who are extremely dedicated to the ministry of Catholic education. I am particularly amazed at Bishop Cote’s commitment to our Catholic schools. The administrators, teachers and staff members at our schools work tirelessly to always put the children first, providing our students with a solid, faith-based and academically enriching experience. My message to all Catholic school parents as you prepare for a wonderful summer with your children, is to please remember to keep the routine of prayer with them. We pray many times each and every day at our schools, and the follow-through and momentum of daily prayer will only bring your families many graces from Our Heavenly Father. Thank you for choosing a Catholic education for your children. Without the wonderful parent base we have here and your sense of stewardship, we would not have the environment that we do. I encourage all families in the diocese to consider the option of Catholic schools for your children. In these times of moral decay and instant massive inappropriate communication, our schools provide a safe haven and an atmosphere of faith and comfort which leads them closer to Jesus, Our Savior, each and every day. Nothing motivates and inspires me more than our children. Most people who visit our schools comment on how polite, respectful, studious, and prayerful they are. That is a tribute to the homes, schools, and parishes working together for the good of our children. They are first and foremost in every decision made about our schools. May God Bless You Always,

Henry Fiore, Jr. Superintendent of Schools

Bishop Thomas J. Tobin, of the Diocese of Providence, with Heney Fiore Jr. at St. Pius X School in Westerly, RI. Staff Writer - WESTERLY SUN The St. Pius X school community has always embraced Henry Fiore. The support has been unwavering for the former principal of the small Catholic school, even when he announced last May he was stepping down to accept a position in the Diocese of Norwich as its new superintendent of schools. On Monday afternoon, Fiore returned to St. Pius X Regional Academy where students, teachers, staff and parents dedicated a new Our Lady of Fatima statue to the 58-year-old for his years of service and dedication. “I’m totally overwhelmed, and I’m humbled,” said Fiore, as he stood near the statue and the plaque permanently honoring him. Fiore served as the school’s principal from 2005 to 2016. “I can’t even tell you what this means. If it wasn’t for our Blessed Mother, I wouldn’t be where I am today. “This whole community took me in, and even now that I’m in a different state, it still supports me.” Fiore, a Westerly native, was joined by his family — his wife

Eileen, a world languages teacher at Stonington High School and three sons — for the special ceremony in front of the school. “We don’t have the numbers we had,” Fiore said. “But it doesn’t decrease the significance of what we’re about.” Bishop Thomas Tobin, of the Diocese of Providence, blessed the statues depicting Our Lady of Fatima and three shepherd children. “What an addition this is to your school, the church and the whole community,” Tobin said. Added St. Pius X Principal Janet Rufful: “It reinforces our devotion to Mary.” During the ceremony, secondgraders John Crowley and Gianna Kennedy, both wearing their First Holy Communion outfits, crowned the Blessed Virgin Mary with a wreath of flowers. “It’s pretty special,” said John, 8. “I really wanted to crown Mary.” Gianna agreed. “We love Mary,” she said, “And I really wanted to wear my dress again.”


“A Holy Place Where We Discover Each Other in God’s Love” Celebrating 76 Years of Excellence in Catholic Education ~ Grades K-8 ~

St. Patrick Cathedral School held a Flag Day celebration lead by the third grade class. They recited the pledge, sang the National Anthem and Grand Old Flag.

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The Science Behind the Slime: S.T.E.M. Day at Sacred Heart School

Photos and article by Linda Norton


tudents at Sacred Heart School in Groton participated in their 12th annual S.T.E.M. Day on April 28th. For those unfamiliar with the acronym, S.T.E.M. means “Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math”. Teachers, Pfizer scientists, parents (some who were also scientists), and volunteers, worked together to provide an extremely interesting and fun daylong experience for the entire student body. Groups of students rotated through the classrooms and participated in specific tasks or experiments that were prepared and led by the scientists. Students were curious, attentive and eager to participate, wearing safety glasses and gloves as needed. Connie Langer, Pfizer scientist and parent, provided helpful explanations about the days’ activities. In one lesson, students learned how to make polymer (a.k.a. slime) and learned about the functions of polymers and the states of matter. In another classroom students learned how to extract, isolate, and handle DNA and learned about the physical and chemical properties of cell membranes and proteins. In another room, students participated in a Monopoly style game, created by a Pfizer scientist, which helped students understand the entire process of drug development from beginning to end, including the financial aspects of bringing medications to fruition. Students also participated in a Mechatronics demonstration, which combined mechanical and electrical engineering, computers and information technology; and another involved the work of the Swiss mathematician Leonhard Euler who pioneered graph theory and topology. 26 David Craig, a School Advisory

Board member, retired pilot, and grandfather of one of the students, also provided a demonstration about how airplanes fly for the younger students. The last program of the day brought the entire student body and teachers together in their new gymnasium for an educational performance by the Nano Brothers (Joel Harris and Dan Foley) from Boston’s Museum of Science. Using humor, high energy juggling, unicycling, teaching, and audience participation, the performance focused on Nanotechnology - the world of atoms and molecules. All the students loved it, especially the younger ones who screamed with surprise and delight throughout! At the end of the day I had an opportunity to speak with two students, Emma Reilly and Eric Smith, both in 7th grade. Emma has been participating in the S.T.E.M. day since she was in pre-K and this was Eric’s second year. Emma commented, “I always find science day as the best day of the year.” This year her favorite demonstration was the Mechatronics. Eric enjoyed the day and his favorite part was the hands-on experiences, especially the slime! The Catechism of the Catholic Church (2293) says “Science and technology are precious resources when placed at the service of man and promote his integral development for the benefit of all.” Let us ask the intercession of these patron saints: Albertus Magnus (science), Isidore of Seville (technology), Patrick (engineering), and Hubert (math). Let’s pray that some of these Sacred Heart students will someday join the ranks of other notable scientists and help make the world a better place for everyone.

Scientist Manisha Patel doing an experiment with Hailly Merrill

Nathan Virtue and Dylan Clark watch scientist Dennis Pelletier.

136 Sachem Street Norwich CT 06360 860-889-2374 Fax 860-886-2396


An Evening of Music at St. Mary Star of the Sea


here were no voices, no lyrics sung, just the sound of an orchestra and its myriad of instruments filling the cathedrallike church of St. Mary Star of the Sea. It was a spring concert, not prayer, although at times one could hardly tell the difference because the music easily lifted the souls of all present. On June 10th, and for the second year in a row, St. Mary Star of the Sea in New London opened their church to the New London Community Orchestra and the Music City Strings Youth Players. The Youth Players are participants in the orchestra’s free lessons program, and have been taught twice a week after school since September, by James Hunter, in

preparation for this performance. When asked why the concert was being held at St. Mary’s, Tom Clark, President of the orchestra, replied “it is the best concert venue for classical music in New London” and was grateful for St. Mary’s generosity in letting them hold the concert in the Church. During introductory remarks, Mr. Clark thanked the businesses and private donors who support their program which provides takehome violins for the youth, as well as lessons, the orchestra’s core mission. David Bradley, a fifth generation native of Stonington, was the Music Director and the evening’s maestro. Mr. Bradley, a retired music teacher with a decades long history of performance and

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education experience, seemed very proud of the orchestra’s accomplishments. The orchestra treated the audience to pieces by Leroy Anderson, Antonin Dvorak, Ron Nelson, Johann Strauss II, and Franz von Suppé. After intermission, the Youth Players exhibited their talents under the direction of James Hunter. They played two pieces, “This Land is Your Land” and Anderson’s “Jazz Pizzicato”, and at times also accompanied the adult orchestra. At the end of the evening, one young musician was noticed leaving with an armful of flowers from her adoring family members, a big smile on her face, and memories from her time in the spotlight as an official member of an orchestra. Perhaps she, or one of the other young people, will someday play Carnegie Hall and will credit their first orchestra performance as St. Mary Star of the Sea in New London.

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Photo and article by Linda Norton


Our YOUTH Continued from page 15


Love for School Continued


School. The Catholic Foundation’s first endowment was the Bishop Daniel A. Hart Fund for the Homeless. This endowment provides support to a variety of organizations in the Diocese that assist people in need by providing food, emergency needs, and other social, educational, and spiritual assistance. In June 2016, the Bishop Daniel A. Hart Fund for the Homeless made monetary grants totaling $8,945.00 to St. Vincent de Paul Place, Norwich; Catholic Charities, Middletown, New London, Willimantic and Norwich and St. Vincent de Paul, Norwich. Each year the Catholic Foundation hosts an Awards Dinner to which it invites all the recipients of its yearly grants as well as the donors who have established endowments within the Foundation.

This year’s dinner is expected to bring together close to 300 people with many children and families who receive tuition assistance from the Foundation attending. Over the past 16 years, the Foundation has disbursed over 3.4 million dollars of assistance. In order to continue its mission, the Foundation continues to work with people and organizations within the Diocese to establish more endowments. If interested in doing so, please contact Mary Ellen Mahoney, Development Manager at (860) 886-1928 or by email at In the alternative, if one would like to support the Foundation but not establish an endowment, individual donations are also accepted by the Foundation for any of its endowments.

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Save the Date! EWTN’S FREE FAMILY CELEBRATION EVENT DCU Center • September 9-10, 2017 • Worcester, Massachusetts

• Featuring talks by your favorite EWTN hosts • Holy Mass & opportunities for Confession • Be part of a television audience • Shop for Holy reminders at our Religious Catalogue Shoppe • Kids will have fun at EWTN’s Faith Factory Booth For more information, go to or call 1-205-795-5813.

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Podemos Ayudar Para reportar cualquier contacto inapropiado por un/a representante de la Diócesis de Norwich, o para buscar ayuda para víctimas, favor de llamar: 1-800-624-7407

… s n o i t a l u t a r g n o C Our Lady of Lourdes in Gales Ferry will be hosting a Human Trafficking seminar Wednesday June 28 at 7pm It will be led by Trooper First Class Christine Jeltema, of the Connecticut State Police. Register for this NO FEE seminar at or by calling 860-464-7251

to Saint Bernard’s Class of 2017 Graduates! Saint Bernard School is now accepting applications for the 2017–18 school year. To learn more, or to tour the school, call us today at 860-848-1271. SAINT BERNARD SCHOOL

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We Can Help To report inappropriate contact of any kind by a representative of the Diocese of Norwich or for assistance to victims, please call: 1-800-624-7407



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For more information and reservation please contact the parish office at (860) 347-2365 or by e-mail: or St. Mary of Czestochowa Church, Middletown

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Oblates of Mary Immaculate Our Lady of Fatima Shrine, Holliston, MA Wednesday, September 20 Father McAlear’s Healing Ministry has been offering hope, healing, love and peace to tens of thousands of people around the world since 1976. BUS pick-up 3 PM Norwich • Exit 82A New London • I-95 Exit 90 Mystic Exit 1 Westerly Bus $45 Janet Przybysz - 860 536-6638 30 Joyce Meehan -

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Four County Catholic June/July 2017  

The official newspaper of the Diocese of Norwich, CT.

Four County Catholic June/July 2017  

The official newspaper of the Diocese of Norwich, CT.