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God’’s Mercy Transforms Hearts

d Hope an e ov L th wi Welcoming 2018


Life is Measured by the Capacity to Love. Pope Francis

Volume 30 • Number 1 • January 2018

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

In this Issue:



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



“We are called to bring Good News to others and to be open to God’s will for us.”

We Are With You

Father Greg Galvin speaking of the opportunity for young men to discern and fulfill their calling to guide others on their spiritual journey.

­Established in 1989 and published each month except July. Made Possible in part through your generous support of the Annual Catholic Appeal


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


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“Each and everyone’s existence is tied to that of others; life is about interactions.” Pope Francis as quoted by Mary Ellen Mahoney crediting The Holy Father with inspiring the “standing together” spirit of this year’s Annual Catholic Appeal.

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Changes and Additions, please email Annual Subscriptions FREE to Annual Catholic Appeal contributors and upon request to registered Catholics in the Diocese of Norwich. ADdress Changes



“Our students are the present-day disciples, growing in faith and love just as the original disciples.” Superintendent of Diocesan Schools, Henry Fiore Jr., recognizing the spiritual strength and servicemindedness of our Catholic School students.



“Do not let us fall into temptation.” Proposed re-translation of one of the Lord’s Prayer passages from the former “ lead us not into temptation.”

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Four County Catholic, 31 Perkins Ave., Norwich, CT 06360-3613 FOUR COUNTY CATHOLIC Issue 1 January (PE 9934) is published monthly except July by The Diocese of Norwich, 31 Perkins Avenue, Norwich, CT 06360-3613. Periodicals postage paid in Hartford, CT 06101 and at additional mailing offices.




LET FAITH LEAD THE WAY God Specializes in New Beginnings

Recently, in delivering a homily while visiting Myanmar, His Holiness Pope Francis urged the more than 150,000 gathered and the world listening to be guided by the Lord’s wisdom and love. The Holy Father spoke of God’s love metaphorically as a “spiritual GPS” that “unfailingly guides us toward the inner life of God and the heart of neighbor.” What a perfect reminder for us to look to the wisdom and guidance of the Lord and His Church as we begin the journey of this new year. Relying exclusively on our own resources, our own compass, our own circle of advisors won’t get us there. To find our way through the trials of everyday 21st century life to true fulfillment, happiness, reconciliation, peace, truth and the joy of helping our fellow travelers, we must look to God’s wisdom and guidance. Therein lies the divine GPS map that is “unfailingly” accurate. One of the transitions we are experiencing in the diocese is the pulling together of a number of parishes into merged communities of faith. I have been very closely involved, as have all Bishops across the Country, in diocesan planning to ensure going forward that we emerge as a stronger, more secure and pastorally well-ministered spiritual community. Change is unsettling. New directions can be difficult to navigate. This is why we must

I am also grateful for your continuing prayers and support for our diocese-wide efforts to recruit young men to discern the holy service of the priesthood which will further strengthen and secure our parish ministries over the years ahead. Outside the transitions we are experiencing in our respective parishes, there is a rather robust set of challenges facing us this new year as faithful Catholics and citizens of this great Nation. We share social justice concerns of great consequence. These require close and informed attention. Among them is immigration reform affecting the young dreamers, millions of undocumented families and their prospects for citizenship, and refugees seeking asylum from tyranny and terrorism. Every opportunity to help influence Congressional leadership must be taken. Every opportunity to assist those vulnerable right here in our diocese must be taken. Every opportunity to influence public opinion in favor of protecting our immigrant brothers and sisters in this nation of immigrants must be taken. Standing by silently is not an option. The Catholic Dioceses in Connecticut stand together and speak with a united voice with respect to the plight of the immigrant in today’s America. We are assisted in our vigilance by the Connecticut Catholic Public Affairs Conference who help keep us all apprised of pending legislation in Congress and invite our participation in having our voices heard. At the moment, we have been strongly focused on the status of DACA, Deferred Action for

Childhood Arrivals. Please visit the Conference’s website,, to keep informed on this important topic. Information is available there in English and Spanish. In 2018, our faith also calls us to continue the fight to save the lives of the unborn who need our voice to protect them. The prospects for moving our society further in the direction of the culture of life is before us. Let us march for life and pray for life unceasingly in this new year. Spend more time with your families this year. Become more involved with your parish ministries. Support the good works of the diocesan ministries who are an extension of living your faith by helping lift lives in need. Take time to pray. Be active and faithful citizens. Share in the blessings of the Eucharist. Make 2018 a year of new beginnings. Take a step closer to Jesus. Feel the warmth of His love and the strength of His support. These are not your typical New Year’s resolutions. These are New Year’s revelations. Living our faith more vigorously as the social challenges persist will make a difference. We can transform our lives and the lives and dignity of our brothers and sisters. Believe in the transforming ministry of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. God specializes in new beginnings. A blessed New Year, Sincerely yours in Christ,

Bishop Michael R. Cote


As a new year is now upon us, we realize that the challenges we face in these interesting times do not lessen from year to year. Fortunately, our faith shared in community with one another, empowers us to embrace the promise of new beginnings. It is time to take personal spiritual inventory, to learn and grow from past missteps and positive experiences too. It is an exhilarating time of opportunity for a fresh start.

focus on the Holy Spirit’s GPS guidance to be sure we adjust responsibly to the challenge of change in today’s world. Standing still is not an option if we are to continue to thrive in our faith. I am so grateful and truly heart-warmed to see how you have been adapting with love and understanding.


My Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,





Que La Fé Muestre El Camino Dios se especializa en nuevos comienzos



Mis queridos hermanos y hermanas en Cristo,


Ahora que el año nuevo está sobre nosotros, nos damos cuenta que los desafíos que enfrentamos en estos tiempos inquietantes no disminuyen de año en año. Afortunadamente, nuestra fe compartida en comunidad unos con otros, nos faculta para aceptar la promesa de nuevos comienzos. Es hora de hacer un inventario espiritual personal, de aprender y crecer de los errores pasados y también de las experiencias positivas. Es un tiempo emocionante de oportunidad para un nuevo comienzo. Recientemente mientras visitaba Birmania, al pronunciar una homilía, Su Santidad el Papa Francisco instó a más de 150,000 personas reunidas y al mundo que escuchaba a ser guiados por la sabiduría y el amor del Señor. El Santo Padre habló metafóricamente del amor de Dios como un “GPS espiritual” que “infaliblemente nos guía hacia la vida interior de Dios y el corazón del prójimo”. Qué perfecto recordatorio para nosotros mientras comenzamos el viaje de este nuevo año para buscar la sabiduría y la guía del Señor y de Su Iglesia. Confiar exclusivamente en nuestros propios recursos, nuestra propia brújula, nuestro propio círculo de asesores no nos llevará allí. Nos hará perder. Debemos mirar la sabiduría y guía de Dios para encontrar nuestro camino a través de las pruebas de la vida cotidiana del siglo 21 a la verdadera realización, felicidad, reconciliación, paz, verdad y alegría de ayudar a nuestros compañeros de viaje, Ahí radica el mapa divino GPS que es “indefectiblemente” preciso. Una de las transiciones que estamos viviendo en la diócesis es reunir a varias parroquias en comunidades de fe fusionadas. Al igual que todos los obispos del país, he estado muy involucrado en la planificación diocesana para asegurar que salgamos adelante y emerger como una comunidad espiritual más fuerte, más segura y pastoralmente bien ministrada. El cambio es inquietante. Las nuevas direcciones pueden ser difíciles de navegar. Esta es la razón por la cual debemos enfocarnos en la guía GPS del Espíritu

Santo para asegurarnos de que nos adaptamos de manera responsable al desafío del cambio en el mundo de hoy. Si queremos continuar progresando en nuestra fe, permanecer inmóvil no es una opción. Estoy muy agradecido y verdaderamente reconfortado de ver cómo usted se ha estado adaptando con amor y comprensión. También estoy agradecido por sus continuas oraciones y apoyo a los esfuerzos de nuestra diócesis para reclutar jóvenes para discernir el servicio sagrado del sacerdocio que fortalecerá y asegurará aún más nuestros ministerios parroquiales en los próximos años. Fuera de las transiciones que estamos experimentando en nuestras respectivas parroquias, hay un conjunto bastante sólido de desafíos que enfrentamos como fieles católicos y ciudadanos de esta gran nación este Nuevo Año. Compartimos preocupaciones de justicia social de grandes consecuencias. Estas requieren una atención cercana e informada. Entre ellas se encuentra la reforma migratoria que afecta a los jóvenes soñadores, millones de familias indocumentadas y sus perspectivas de ciudadanía y refugiados que buscan asilo de la tiranía y el terrorismo. Deben tomarse todas las oportunidades para ayudar a influir en el liderazgo del Congreso. Se deben aprovechar todas las oportunidades para ayudar a los vulnerables aquí en nuestra diócesis. Deben aprovecharse todas las oportunidades para influir en la opinión pública a favor de proteger a nuestros hermanos y hermanas inmigrantes en esta nación de inmigrantes. Permanecer silenciosamente no es una opción. Las Diócesis Católicas en Connecticut se unen y hablan con una voz unida con respecto a la difícil situación del inmigrante en la América de hoy. La Conferencia de Asuntos Públicos Católicos de Connecticut nos ayuda en nuestra vigilancia y nos ayuda a mantenernos informados sobre la legislación pendiente en el Congreso e invitan a nuestra participación a que se escuchen nuestras voces. Por

el momento, nos hemos enfocado fuertemente en el estado de DACA, Acción Diferida para Llegadas Infantiles. Visite el sitio web de la Conferencia,, para mantenerse informado sobre este importante tema. La información está disponible allí en inglés y español. Nuestra fe también nos llama a continuar en el 2018, la lucha para salvar las vidas de los no nacidos que necesitan nuestra voz para protegerlos. Las perspectivas de llevar a nuestra sociedad más lejos en la dirección de la cultura de la vida están ante nosotros. Marchemos por la vida y oremos por la vida incesantemente en este Nuevo Año. Este año pase más tiempo con sus familias. Comprométase más con los ministerios de su parroquia. Apoye las buenas obras de los ministerios diocesanos que son una extensión de vivir su fe ayudando a levantar vidas necesitadas. Tómese el tiempo para orar. Ser ciudadanos activos y fieles. Comparta en las bendiciones de la Eucaristía. Haga del 2018 un año de nuevos comienzos. De un paso más cerca de Jesús. Sienta la calidez de su amor y la fuerza de su apoyo. Estas no son las resoluciones típicas de Año Nuevo. Estas son las revelaciones de Año Nuevo. Vivir nuestra fe más vigorosamente a medida que persisten los desafíos sociales marcará la diferencia. Podemos transformar nuestras vidas y las vidas y la dignidad de nuestros hermanos y hermanas. Crea en el ministerio transformador de nuestro Señor y Salvador, Jesucristo. Dios se especializa en nuevos comienzos Un bendecido y transformador Año Nuevo Sinceramente en el amor de Cristo,

Michael R. Cote Obispo de Norwich

Our DIOCESE Mr. Larry Barile First year Theology, Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary, Weston, Massachusetts.

Mr. Michael Castiblanco Third Year Theology Mount St. Mary’s Seminary Emmitsburg, Maryland

Deacon Ronald Blank Fourth year -Theology, Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary, Weston, Massachusetts.

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

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MR. Michael Bovino Second year - Theology, Mount Saint Mary Seminary, Emmitsburg, Maryland.

We pray for men to answer the call to be instruments of God’s grace as priests of Jesus Christ.

Deacon Frank Gilbert Fourth year - Theology, Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary, Weston, Massachusetts.


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Holy Hour for Vocations

The Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D., Bishop of Norwich, leads the Holy Hour:

January 18 St. Andrew, Colchester Father Marek Masnicki 6-7pm

February 15 St. John , Montville Father Robert Buongirno 6-7pm those young men. May they truly sense that they are being called to consider serving the Church as one of Christ’s priests. If you would like to assist in sponsoring someone, please contact the Vocation Office Mr. Normand Laflamme First year - Theology, Mount Saint Mary Seminary, Emmitsburg, Maryland

directly. Thank you and may God continue to send true laborers to work in the harvest here in Eastern Connecticut.

Mr. Jacob Ramos Second year - Philosophy, Mount Saint Mary Seminary, Emmitsburg, Maryland.

Ruben Sanchez UCAELI Program UCONN/Storrs






Mr. Dharen Brochero UnderGrad/ Philosophy Major Mount St. Mary’s Seminary Emmitsburg, Maryland

We are called to bring Good News to others and to be open to God’s will for us. When we open our hearts to the grace God desires to share with us, nothing is impossible. I believe the diocese will benefit from this great opportunity of true discernment for

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During the first week of January, I attended the FOCUS Student Leadership convention. This year, with the permission of Bishop Cote, the program had been expanded to include one of our seminarians and a high school student from the diocese. Having already attended eight of these conventions, I believe that the information, method of delivery, and atmosphere of being with young adults from around the country lights a fire of faith. A fire, that once lit, does not seem to be extinguishable!

My prayers and hopes are that in the coming years we continue to sponsor, on the parish level, a young man between his senior year of high school and any year of college, to attend this convention. Why? Because they will become leaders in the Church, who will open their hearts to Christ in a new way. They will embrace the challenge of their faith that we have all been called to do.




Several seminarians, candidates for sponsorship with the diocese, and I attended a Christmas gathering with Bishop Cote. Prayer, conversation, good food and the gift cards you supplied to our Advent Seminarian Gift Card drive, were shared. Thank you for supporting our seminarians with their personal expenses during the coming year. They are very grateful for your generosity.

The work of the Holy Spirit, experienced through the many speakers, activities, and faith sharing of their peers, seemed to truly touch and open their hearts to receive and to share what God desires to give them. I look forward to sharing what I witnessed as they experienced this unique opportunity to share their faith.



pray that everyone had a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Thank you for the many prayers for vocations to the priesthood throughout 2017.


Father Gregory Galvin, Director of Priestly Vocations




Diocese Announces Appointments within Office of Chancellor Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D., Bishop of Norwich has announced the following appointments. Sister Elissa Rinere, C.P., J.C.D. as Chanscellor, Diocese of Norwich.


Reverend Brian J. Romanowski, J.C.L. as Co-Vice Chancellor, and Reverend Peter J. Langevin as Co-Vice Chancellor.


Sister Rinere is a Passionist Sister with a doctorate in canon law from the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC. She has served the Diocese of Norwich for the past twelve years in various directorship capacities as educator, Tribunal judge, liturgy advisor, ministry evaluator and as Director of the Office of Pastoral Planning and the Office for Worship. Father Romanowski has fourteen years of experience in service to the Diocese of Norwich as parochial vicar and administrator of several parishes, Pastor of St. Patrick Parish in Mystic, Chaplain at St. Bernard School, advocate and Tribunal judge and the Bishop’s delegate for Safe Environments. Father Langevin, currently parochial vicar at the Cathedral of St. Patrick in Norwich, is a former teacher and school administrator whose last post, previous to his ordination to the priesthood, was at Xavier High School, where he was Dean of Faculty Formation, responsible for overseeing the hiring and formation of new teachers. In making these appointments, Bishop Cote noted that “the Diocese is blessed to have the complementary talents and experience of these appointees who will continue in their new positions to help realize the greater mission of the Church to lift lives through God’s love and hope.”

The Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D., Bishop of Norwich, has made the following clergy and diocesan appointments in the Diocese of Norwich:

DIOCESAN APPOINTMENTS Sister Elissa Rinere, C.P., J.C.D., Chancellor, while continuing as Director of the Office of Pastoral Planning and Director of the Office of Worship. Reverend Brian Romanowski, J.C.L. Co-Vice Chancellor, while continuing as Adjutant Judicial Vicar to the Diocesan Tribunal Office. Reverend Peter Langevin, Co-Vice Chancellor, while continuing as Parochial Vicar, Cathedral of Saint Patrick, Norwich.

CLERGY APPOINTMENTS Reverend Mark O’Donnell, Administrator, Saint Paul Parish, Waterford, while continuing as Pastor, Saint Joseph Parish, New London, Saint Mary, Star of the Sea Parish, New London, and Our Lady of Grace, Fishers Island. Deacon Rod Gaynor from Deacon, Saint Joseph, New London, to Retirement.

Sister Elissa Rinere, C.P., J.C.D., Chancellor


Profile of a Priest

Look for this column every month to learn more about the priests in the Norwich Diocese

By Marianne Nicholas Where are you from? Born and raised in Southbridge, Massachusetts.

Who was your biggest influence for entering the priesthood? One influential person in my life would be my childhood pastor, the late Father Maurice Gilbert, who was a true mentor, spiritual father, and friend to me over the years. Father Gregory Galvin of the Norwich Diocese, whom I met when I began my teaching career at Xavier High School, also provided me with his encouragement and played a critical role in my discernment to the priesthood.

What one word would describe your Family? Loving. My parents made sure to teach my brother and me that love means giving of yourself, sacrificing what you might want, in order to do what is right.

What was your spiritual life like before entering the priesthood? From a very early age I was actively involved in my home parish of Notre Dame in Southbridge where at times I served as an Altar Boy, Extraordinary Minister of Holy

Communion, CCD Teacher and Choir Member. After High School, I chose to attend the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. where I majored in Philosophy. Upon graduating I worked as a Religion Teacher, Campus Minister, and eventually as Dean of Faculty at Xavier High School in Middletown. What do you enjoy about being a priest?

Being a priest is exciting - no two days are the same. What do I enjoy most? It has to be experiencing the power of God’s love in the lives of the people we serve through the Sacraments. Whether it is in celebrating the Mass and making Jesus present for the faithful to receive the Eucharist, or encountering God’s mercy in the Confessional, witnessing God’s healing and soothing presence of the Holy Spirit as we visit and anoint the sick and the dying, or celebrating the joy of new life as we bring new members into God’s family through the waters of Baptism... in all these ways and more, our senses are heightened to see God and the power of his love at work!

What are the current positions you hold/ committees on which you serve? Bishop Cote has asked that effective this month, I assume further responsibilities as one of the newly appointed diocesan Co-Vice Chancellors, while continuing as Parochial Vicar, Cathedral of Saint Patrick. I am on the Pastoral Planning Advisory Board and I am working with the Office of Faith Events to develop a curriculum for parish Religious Education programs in our Diocese. What do you enjoy doing in your leisure time? Listening to classical and sacred music; reading books in the areas of philosophy, theology, and languages; and traveling, especially to Europe/ Italy.

What else would you like people to know about you? That I am a sinner- the truth is that we all fall short of God’s Commandments and expectations of us. We all struggle with weakness and temptation. I try to go to Confession at least once a month, so please if it has been a long time since your last confession, just go. Trust me, you’ll be glad you did!


Father Peter Langevin


Father Peter Langevin, Parochial Vicar, the Cathedral of St. Patrick, Norwich Ordination date: June 25, 2016



In Tribute



Prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mar�


Reverend Joseph B. Whittel Waterford – Reverend Joseph B. Whittel, 79, of Waterford, and formerly of West Hartford, Pastor of St. Paul Church in Waterford, was called to eternal life with the Lord on Friday, Dec. 8, 2017. He was born on Aug. 23, 1938, in Philadelphia, Pa., the son of the late Joseph and Anne (Heagney) Whittel.

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.

~ MDP ~

Norwich, CT (860) 887-7468 New London, CT (860) 701-9171

He was united in marriage to Eileen Kassebart on May 14, 1960, at St. Mary Magdalene Church in Queens, N.Y. She predeceased him on March 3, 1997.

Prior to entering the priesthood, he worked for The Hartford Insurance Company, retiring after many years. Father Whittel was ordained a Deacon in 1979, in the Archdiocese of Hartford, where he served at St. Peter Claver and Sacred Heart Parishes. He later studied for the priesthood at Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary in Weston, Mass., where he earned a Master of Divinity Degree. Father Whittel was ordained to the priesthood Sept. 13, 2003, by The Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D., Bishop of Norwich at the Cathedral of St. Patrick in Norwich.

He first served as Parochial Vicar at the Cathedral of St. Patrick, Norwich. He also served at St. Mark Church in Westbrook, as Pastor of St. Mary in Jewett City and Pastor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Quaker Hill, where his pastoral role would later expand to include St. John the Evangelist in Uncasville and Our Lady of Lakes in Oakdale. In 2012, Father Whittel was appointed Pastor of St. Paul in Waterford. In addition to his parochial assignments, Father Whittel was appointed diocesan Vicar for Ministries in 2006.

Father Whittel is survived by his four children, Pat Whittel, Joseph and his wife Kathryn Whittel, Karen and her husband Peter Lavoie, John and his wife Colleen Whittel; his eight grandchildren, Patrick, Kaelea and her husband Kevin, Margaret, Alexander, Benjamin, Austin, Liam, Eileen; and a great grandson, Theodore; his brother, John and wife Julianne Whittel; and sister-in-law, Mary Lou Cudahy and her husband Brian. He was also predeceased by a sister, Elizabeth Whittel.

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ho better than Pope Francis to inspire the 2018 Annual Catholic Appeal Campaign! In April 2017, Pope Francis surprised many of the attendees at a TED talk held in Vancouver, Canada by giving a speech via video direct from the Vatican. With some 1,800 people in the audience, Pope Francis delivered a timely and insightful analysis of the world we live in. As is often the case, the Pope touched upon many of the issues confronting so many of us today, ranging from the plight of the poor and immigrants to society’s “culture of waste”. In the face of such difficulties, Pope Francis delivered great hope: hope for the people in the audience, hope for our world and its future. Emphasizing his message of hope, Pope Francis said, “I would love it if this meeting could help remind us that we all need each other, and we can only build

Standing “Together to

the future by standing together…” Pope Francis continued in his 18-minute video noting that “the years have strengthened my conviction that each and everyone’s existence is tied to that of others: life is not time merely passing by; life is about interactions.” He exhorted. “We have so much to do, and we must do it together”.

noted that “Bishop Cote would like to bring the Pope’s message of “standing together” to our Diocese. We have many generous people who will hear the Pope’s words and stand together to build the future by donating to the Annual Catholic Appeal, thereby helping more people in need and strengthening our communities.” By supporting the Diocese’s more than 25 ministries, the ACA allows each of these ministries to provide direct assistance to the impoverished, to educate our young students in the teachings of Christ and to positively impact the lives of many in our communities through emotional,

Build the Future

Recognizing the truth and strength of Pope Francis’ message, the 2018 ACA Campaign theme will be “Standing Together to Build the Future”. Office of Development Executive Director, Angela Arnold

physical and spiritual support. Each day as we turn to Jesus in our prayers, let us remember how one of His messengers here on earth, Pope Francis, provides us, through both his words and action, a map to follow if we only take the time to notice. As the Pope said in his TED talk, when it comes to solving many of our worldly problems, “Fortunately, there are … those who are creating a new world by taking care of the other, even out of their own pockets.” As the 2018 ACA “Standing Together to Build the Future” approaches, let us be confident that the Pope’s words will resound in all our hearts. For more information on the ACA or to make a donation, please visit www. or call 860-886-1928.



By Mary Ellen Mahoney


Pope Francis Inspires 2018 ACA Theme


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TELEVISION MASS February 7, 2017

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Masses of Healing and Hope

2nd & 4th Monday’s January 8 & 22 at 2pm February 12 & 26 at 2pm Spiritual Renewal Center Individual Prayer and Anointing.

York Correctional Healing Mass

Saturday’s, January 13 & February 10 at 1pm. Individual Prayer and Anointing

Life in the Spirit Weekend Retreat

Friday- Sunday January 19-21 At My Father’s House, Moodus, 7pm Friday - Sunday after lunch. To register for a wonderful opportunity call 860-873-1906 or Presented by Fr. Ray Introvigne

Mass of Healing and Healing Service

Sunday, January 28 St. Thomas the Apostle Church 870 Farmington Ave., West Hartford Mass, 1-2pm; Healing Service, 2-4pm Prayer Teams, Individual Prayer and Anointing.

Prayer Meeting

Every Tuesday afternoon at 2pm Spiritual Renewal Center, Norwich

Spiritual Renewal Services

11 Bath Street • Norwich, CT 06360 Phone: 860-887-0702

In Loving Memory BALTIC - Mother Mary Theresita, SCMC, 98, Sister of Charity of Our Lady, Mother of the Church, died December 9, 2017 surrounded by her Sisters at Holy Family Motherhouse in Baltic. Mother was born in Taftville, Connecticut on November 2, 1919, the daughter of Arthur Jeannotte and Diana MOTHER M. THERESITA (Bellehumeur) Jeannotte. She was preJEANNOTTE, SCMC deceased by eleven siblings. 1919 - 2017 She is survived by a large extended family. Mother entered the Sisters of Charity on September 17, 1939 and professed Perpetual Vows on May 5, 1944. She received a Masters in Reading Education from Cardinal Stritch College in 1958, and was the founder of the Sacred Heart Educational Center in Baltic, serving for many years as director. Mother taught at Sacred Heart School in Taftville from 1946 until 1958, when she became Directress of Novices at Holy Family Novitiate. Mother served as Superior General of the Sisters of Charity of Our Lady, Mother of the Church from 1970 to 1982 and from 1992 to 2000. as principal of St. Joseph School and the Academy of the Holy Family, both in Baltic. Mother is revered for her loving care of the sick, and for her role in establishing the Sisters of Charity of Our Lady Mother of the Church.

Trust in the mercy of God’s love. If you are carrying the grief and sorrow of past abortions, call Project Rachel a post-abortion healing ministry. All calls are confidential. 860-861-4439


of Peace

Especially during the winter months, some parishioners are wary of shaking hands at the Sign of Peace. Just keep in mind that the “Sign” of Peace can be a handshake, a smile, a wave, a verbal greeting, or any combination of these. The most important point is that whatever sign we use to greet one another during Mass, the intention to bestow peace and to live in peace with our neighbors must be heartfelt and sincere.








St Diocesan

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Our DIOCESE January 28 - February 3 Catholic Schools Week



An Annual Celebration of Catholic Education in the United States. Information regarding Open Houses and other activities will be available thru each school and the Diocesan School Office.


Saturday, February 10 Celebrate Marriage

Come away for a day and renew your dreams, increase your passion, and refresh and celebrate your marriage. Join other married couples from 9-3pm Sunday, February 4 at Christ the King Parish, 1 McCurdy Rd., Old Lyme, with a snow date of 21st Annual Mass for February 17 if needed. The cost is $35 Consecrated Life per couple, which includes workbook The Cathedral of Saint Patrick, Norwich, and lunch. Registration is required. To at 10:30am. All are invited to join Bishop register, call Catholic Family Services at Cote in thanking God for the gift of 860-848-2237, Ext. 306. Or, send your consecrated life and for the sisters, brothers, first names (husband and wife), last and religious priests who enrich the Church name, address and telephone number and build up God’s Kingdom with the with fee made payable to the Diocese of witness of their religious commitment. Norwich to: Catholic Family Services The homilist will be Father Peter Grover, Office, 199 Broadway, Norwich, CT O.M.V., Rector of Saint Clement Eucharist 06360. Shrine in Boston.

2x4 MercifulSaviour Jan18 11/15/2017 2:02 PM Page 1

392 South Main Street, Colchester


Store Hours: Mon-Wed 10-5, Thurs & Fri 10-6, Sat 10-3

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Any One In-Stock Item

Expires 2/20/18. One Coupon Per Customer. Must have coupon to receive discount. We carry: Rosary Beads, Jewelry, Music, Books, Bibles, Indoor & Outdoor Statues, Crucifixes, Wall Crosses/Crucifixes, Eternal Lights & Candles, Greeting Cards for all occasions, Missals, Prayer Books & Cards, DVD's, Giftware for Sacramental Celebrations,Baptism Gifts for children and adults.

Friendship • Warmth • Laughter Sharing • Caring • Giving It’s the time of year to give thanks for our many blessings. At Creamery Brook, the list is long.

We invite you to come and share some time with us and feel the warmth of our sharing, caring, friendly community. Call us at 860-779-8700 for more information or a tour. 36 Vina Lane, Brooklyn, CT 06234 • 860-779-8700 •

Creamery Brook is part of the Continuum of Care at


Team Effort Changes An Outreach to Haiti Student’s Life


poverty. With little free public education, sponsors help 200 students attend school. Often, as in Mariline’s case, Outreach does more than that. If you would like to be a part of this life changing effort, visit our website and find out how you can help. Thank you for any support you can offer.

school and in the end it proved to be a cost the family could not cover. She returned home to Les Cayes and did not attend school for a year. At some point a family friend advised Jocelyn to “go to a place named Outreach and ask for Mr. Erold”. Erold Ezerbe, then the Education Director at the Diocese of Norwich Outreach to Haiti, accepted Mariline into the program. With the help of Cross Catholic Outreach and a sponsor from Connecticut, all costs were covered and Mariline was once again a student at St. Vincent. In 2017, she completed 9th grade and is now moving into secondary school. She is ready for the challenge. Outreach’s sponsorship program continues to pay school costs and supports needed transportation expenses.

Mezalus Emil, our new Education Director says “I cannot tell you how important and helpful this program is because thanks to God and to your support, Mariline will be someone who will be helpful to herself, to her parents and to her country. God will certainly bless her and all who have helped her.” A team of ‘good Samaritans” including Jocelyne, giving medical professionals, school officials, and Outreach to Haiti staff and sponsors have made this result possible. Mariline’s strength and determination made it a reality. At Outreach we believe our Education Program is the most powerful tool to create opportunity and overcome

Pope Francis’ Prayer Intention That Christians, and other religious minorities, may be able to practice their faith in full freedom.


ariline Silne was born severely disabled in the countryside city of Les Cayes, Haiti. Without intervention, she would never be able to walk or stand and her life would be very difficult. Her older sister, Jocelyne, was determined to find some way to change that outcome. Jocelyne carried Mariline to the bus station and their shared odyssey began. The first stop was St. Vincent’s, a school for disabled children in Haiti’s capitol city of Port-au-Prince. The second was to a hospital nearby the school where Jocelyne hoped Mariline’s condition could be evaluated. While both organizations wished to help, neither felt equipped to address the severity of Mariline’s condition. A second hospital, citing the potential complexity of the needed surgery, recommended finding a skilled orthopedic surgeon. After several more visits to Portau-Prince hospitals, the sisters found an orthopedic specialist willing to perform the surgery. It was necessary to correct the alignment of one leg and, sadly, to amputate the other. But thanks to the persistence of a sister, the skill of the surgeon and the grace of God, the surgery was successful. With a prosthetic and the aid of crutches, Mariline soon was able to stand and walk. Jocelyne was able to enroll her in St. Vincent’s school. Mariline needed to board at the


By Marie Farrell




Diocese Issues Financial Report



he Diocese of Norwich has issued a financial report for The Norwich Roman Catholic Diocesan Corporation and The Annual Catholic Appeal of The Diocese of Norwich, Inc. for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2016.


The Diocese of more than 228,520 Catholics spent $3,783,527 on funding for ministries and programs, including but not limited to, Catholic Charities/Family Services in Norwich, New London, Willimantic and Middletown, St. Vincent de Paul Places in Norwich and Middletown, Project Northeast in Putnam, the Hispanic and Haitian Ministries throughout the Diocese, and the offices of Faith Events, Prison Ministry, Pastoral Planning, and Ministry to the Sick.

Contributions and collections including the Annual Catholic Appeal and diocesan assessments accounted for approximately 45 percent of the total diocesan revenue of $19,551,096. Contributions and collections increased 94 percent from the previous year, largely due to an increase in bequests, to $6,567,376 and diocesan assessments were $2,317,985,

an increase of 2 percent from the 2015 fiscal year.

Insurance premiums that the Diocese charges various diocesan entities for property and liability coverage, amounted to $2,491,465. Insurance premiums paid to Catholic Mutual Insurance and other commercial carriers for property and liability insurance, for Catholic Umbrella Pool assessments, claims paid under the selfinsurance program, and auto and workmen’s compensation insurance amounted to $1,826,729. The Diocese is a member of the RETA Trust, which is a self-insured trust comprised of Catholic Dioceses and organizations nationwide with over 33,000 insured lives participating in its medical plan. The plan operates as a fully insured plan and is presented in the financial statements in the same manner as the other types of insurances carried by the Diocese. For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2016 premiums billed under the plan were $6,431,028 and payments to the Trust were $5,822,159. All Diocesan investments are made in accordance with guidelines issued by the USCCB and they are subject to an independent scanning process

semi-annually by Aquinas Associates to ensure compliance with these guidelines. For the year ended June 30, 2016, net investment income including realized and unrealized gains and losses on securities was $344,098 which is fairly reflective of overall market trends. Expenses for seminarians totaled $456,111, and include expenses for tuition and subsistence for current seminarians and payment of educational loans for seminary graduates who are active priests in the Diocese.

Payments to aid in the support of retired and infirm priests were $494,866. These costs are offset partially by the Easter Sunday collection, which amounted to $169,254. Administration expenses decreased by 6 percent to $1,716,729 consisting primarily

of $1,043,807 in direct employee expenses including salaries, payroll taxes, pensions and medical insurance.

Direct subsidies to high schools attended by diocesan students were $1,370,191 including the fair market rental value of the facilities.

In the fiscal year ended June 30, 2009, the Diocese was required to adopt the Financial Accounting Standards Board Statement 158 which requires full disclosure of post-retirement benefits. The actuarially determined benefit of the priests’ post-retirement benefits at June 30, 2016 was $4,193,946 and $3,560,550 at June 30, 2015. The combined diocesan financial statements do not reflect the finances of the Diocese’s parishes or any of its schools.

Pope Francis @Pontifex

Faith becomes tangible when it finds its expression in love and, especially, in the service of our brothers and sisters in difficulty.


Combined Statements of Financial Position June 30, 2016 and 2015


2016 2016

2015 2015

Combined Statements of Activities For THE YEARS ENDED June 30, 2016 and 2015

Revenues and Support

Contributions and Collections Diocesan Tax Insurance Program- Property Insurance Program- Medical Investment Income Net Realized and Unrealized Gains Change in Value of Split-Interest Agreements Gain/Loss on Asset Disposition Insurance Proceeds Facility Rental & Other Income Total Revenue and Support


$ 6,567,376 2,317,985 2,491,465 6,431,028 293,123 50,975 137,510 575 1,261,059 $19,551,096


$ 3,386,861 2,267,090 2,626,411 7,511,440 328,013 89,889 27,174 1,100,000 1,295,720 $18,632,598




$ 3,783,527 494,866 456,111 1,370,191 1,826,729 5,822,159 1,716,729 375,395 130,154 200,000 224,710 $16,400,571

$ 4,773,058 186,592 353,960 1,428,500 1,895,979 6,516,618 1,822,072 373,419 125,146 525,000 1,100,000 243,088 $19,343,432

$3,150,525 Change in Net Assets Post Retirement Benefit Recognition $(633,396) $15,060,806 Net Assets Beginning $17,577,935 Net Assets Ending

(710,834) 1,213,471 14,558,169 $15,060,806

Ministries and Programs Retired and Infirm Priests Seminarians High School Subsidies Insurance Program-Property Insurance Program-Medical Administration Fund-Raising Interest Uncollectible Support & Insurance Litigation Settlement Depreciation Total Expenses


2015 2015

$ $259,474 259,474 Cash and Cash Equivalents - Diocesan Corporation Lines of Credit Advances $276,543 $276,543 $ 276,543 $ 276,543 $ $619,100 619,100 851,640 Cash and Cash Equivalents - Annual Catholic Appeal Inc. $851,640 755,154 Accounts and Accruals Payable $439,363 576,088 439,363 576,088 755,154 1,111,114 Total Cash and Cash Equivalents $1,111,114 1,374,254 Agency Obligations $315,017 356,591 315,017 356,591 2,181,552 Short-Term Investments $2,181,552 2,447,927 Grants Payable $145,050 188,225 145,050 188,225 4,998,575 Accounts Receivable $4,998,575 4,636,066 Split-Interest Liabilities $47,804 47,339 47,804 47,339 766,657 Current Unconditional Promises to Give $766,657 812,514 Loans Payable $2,410,718 2,410,718 2,410,718 2,410,718 812,514 3,064,593 Bequests Receivable $3,064,593 - Other Retirement Obligations $4,193,946 3,560,550 4,193,946 3,560,550 1,047,385 Loans Receivable $1,047,385 996,023 Total Liabilities 7,828,441 7,416,054 $ 7,828,441 $ 7,416,054 996,023 53,792 Cash Restricted to Future Programs $53,792 53,622 53,622 657,173 Beneficial interest in Trusts $657,173 519,662 Net Assets 519,662 481,028 Catholic Umbrella Pool Interest $481,028 484,754 484,754 6,993,721 Long-Term Investments $6,993,721 Unrestricted $7,434,432 8,248,060 7,434,432 8,248,060 6,884,489 4,050,786 Property and Equipment, Net $4,050,786 Temporarily Restricted $9,476,331 6,283,084 9,476,331 6,283,084 4,267,549 $25,406,376 Total Assets $25,406,376 $22,476,860 $22,476,860 Permanently Restricted $667,172 529,662 667,172 529,662 Total Net Assets 17,577,935 15,060,806 $17,577,935 $15,060,806 Total Liabilities and Net Assets $25,406,376 $25,406,376 $22,476,860 $22,476,860


2016 2016







By Wayne Gignac


n December 12, 2017, many faithful from across our Diocese gathered at the Cathedral of Saint Patrick to celebrate The Annual Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Homilist, Deacon Octavio Flores from Iglesia San Francisco in Middletown reminded us, “Almighty God in his infinite wisdom sent Mary, the mother of Our Lord Jesus Christ, to touch the hearts of His children in need. God knows well that the safest way to reach our hearts is through a mother. And in this case, He sent the best mother of all, Our Blessed Mother Mary in the person

Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe of the virgin of Guadalupe.” In Nahuatl, the native language of Juan Diego, the Aztec Indian to whom She appeared on the Hill of Tepeyac in 1531, Guadalupe means: the one that crushed the head of the serpent. He went on to tell those in attendance that the Virgin Mother came, “. . . at a critical moment in the history of Mexico. She is the woman who crushed the head of the serpent and caused the spread of the gospel in the Americas. Putting an end to the evil of barbaric human sacrifices.” Every year, this joyful, bilingual celebration unites us all as one big family in our faith and in our love

of Our Blessed Mother. “Today, December 12, we also celebrate, in a very particular way, what the bishops of the United States and our own Bishop have declared to be a Day of Prayer and Solidarity for our immigrant and refugee brothers and sisters.”, said Deacon Flores. “To these immigrant and refugee family members, know that the Catholic Church in this great nation, its bishops and all its ministers, and all its other members, are with you because when one of you suffers, all of us as members of the mystical body of Christ suffer.” The Guadalupe celebration is not a

one-day event. It begins with a n (a nine-night gathering to pray th Holy Rosary); the numbers incre the nights approach the festive ev Regardless of weather conditions December 11th at midnight, devo from different parts of the dioces gather in Willimantic to participa the Guadalupe procession. Each walks behind a lit candle praying Rosary close behind the image o Virgin of Guadalupe walking up Main and Bridge Street in Willim to Club Road, in Windham wher Iglesia Del Sagrado Corazón de located. As we have come to expect, th December 12th Guadalupe celeb at the Cathedral of Saint Patrick beautiful and special. Mother Ma Jude Lazarus, Director of the His Apostolate, has been the organiz leader of both events since 1996. with the help of a committee, eve detail - the decorations, the mari music, the liturgy and the people dressed in typical Mexican cloth - speaks to us about the devotion diocese has to Our Lady of Guad Deacon Flores concluded his h with this prayer, “May the virgin Guadalupe watch over us all with


the center of our lives and be worthy witnesses of God’s presence and love. Amen.”

Homilist, Deacon Octavio Flores

Concelebrant, Father Ray Introvigne

Photos by Meredith Morrison


he bration was ary spanic zational . Along ery iachi e hing n the dalupe. homily n of h the

protective mantle of “mother,” and, together with her messenger, Saint Juan Diego, intercede on our behalf to her Son, Jesus, to help us keep Christ as


novena he ease as vent. s, on otees se ate in person g the of the from mantic re Jesús is

Sister Mary Jude Lazarus, SCMC



RCIA Leaders Meet to Strengthen Parish Programs


By Andrea Hoisl riests, lay people and religious met recently for a lively discussion on ways to strengthen

and energize how the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) is implemented in parishes. In order to look forward,



Saint Bernard School



Jan 27th • 8AM-12PM March 10th • 8AM-12PM


You have many choices of where to educate your child. That’s why we would like to invite you to one of our Information Sessions where you can learn about our academic programs, athletics, campus life and see why Saint Bernard School is a place for your child to learn, grow and discover!

INFORMATION SESSION Saturday, March 8th 6PM - 8PM Ask us about our Tailored Tuition Program to help meet your family’s unique financial situation. Saint Bernard School Grades 6–12 1593 Norwich-NL Tpke Uncasville, CT 06382

To RSVP call 860-848-1271 or visit D745119

members of the group shared the strength and weaknesses they see in current RCIA programs and practices in their individual parishes. Before gathering as a group, the Office of Faith Events surveyed all parish RCIA Coordinators on the specifics of their parish programs. The questions ranged from who makes up each parish’s RCIA team to the types of resources used in each program. The survey results show that as a diocese we share many of the same struggles that Catholics across the country are facing. This point was explained, as well as the history and origin of the rite itself, by Sr. Elissa Rinere, the Director of the Diocesan Worship Office and newly appointed Chancellor. The message the Office of Faith Events laid down as the foundation for the evening was twofold: first the RCIA is not “a program” that has a beginning and an ending, rather it is a process of conversion that looks different and is different in every individual. Secondly, the RCIA, if implemented properly in a parish, involves the whole worshipping community. The misconception is that the RCIA team is responsible for welcoming and journeying with

the candidate, when in fact the whole worshipping community is invited to be part of the spiritual journey, if done correctly. Peter Simoncini, an RCIA coordinator for Sacred Heart Parish in Groton, discussed the struggles his parish is facing with limited resources, the busyness of everyone’s lives and the shrinking number of adults who want to become members of the Church. These same sentiments seemed to be shared by most of the group present. Another participant from Notre Dame Parish in Durham commented: “It was great to hear what worked and didn’t work in different parishes. We can all definitely learn from one another how to do this better.” The evening was the second in a seven-step process put forth by the Office of Faith Events to analyze and ultimately streamline the RCIA process throughout the diocese. The next step is an RCIA Game Plan Night scheduled for January 30, 2018.

The Families Behind Your Favorite ShopRite ShopRite of Norwich 634 W. Main St.

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ShopRite of Enfield 40 Hazard Ave.

ShopRite is Now 22 Stores Strong in Connecticut

As a man thinks in his heart, so is he. Proverbs 23:7

Catholic Charities Behavioral Health Clinic Offering a full range of behavioral services in our licensed clinics located in Norwich, New London and Portland.


• Are you or your family struggling with relationship? This program provides counseling to• Psychiatric Medication Management • Would you(Medication) like assistance Evaluation with personaland problems? • Intensive Treatment Programming • Are you having a hard time at work or keeping a job? individuals, couples and families • Anger • Is your child having problems Management therapy in school or with friends? If you answered yes to any these questions, this programDisorders may that need additional support. • Specialized Treatment forofPersons with Co-occuring help you resolve problems and improve relationships

Am I Eligible?

• Substance Abuse Treatment • Availability of Agency Based Self Help (Dual Recovery Anonymous) Meetings Additional Information: • Individual, Group, Family and Couples (Marriage) therapy This program • Case Management is offered in partnership with the Connecticut Council

This program is designed for individuals and families who are uninsured and meet income guidelines. To receive assistance through of Family Service Agencies (CCFSA.) CCFSA is Connecticut’s only this program, individuals must legally reside in CT and be a U.S. citizen network about of non-profit agenciesorfocused exclusively on families. All of For Questions our services for more information or qualified alien. For more information about the program please call our member agencies are nationally accredited and form a statewide please contact: Dr. Ciro Anthony Massa, Psy.D, LCSW, LADC Catholic Charities, Diocese of Norwich, 860-889-8346. system of support for all phases of family life.

Funding support by CT Department of Social Service


The Miller Family


Our Diocese

Bishop Honors Roger Gosselin with the Patrici-Anne Award for Over 80 Years of Distinguished Service




Photo By Wayne Gignac


FCC News Desk n this twenty-fifth day of December, in the sixty-fourth year since the establishment of the Diocese of Norwich, in the twenty-second year in my Episcopacy, and in my fourteenth year as Bishop of Norwich, in recognition of your eighty years of dedicated service to music ministry within the parishes of the Diocese of Norwich, in the presence of your colleagues and many, many friends, it is my pleasure, to present to you the Patrici-Anne Award of the Diocese of Norwich.

So began the proclamation read by Father Joseph Tito from Bishop Michael R. Cote honoring Roger Gosselin for his eighty years of distinguished service to the Diocese. Mr. Gosselin has faithfully and effectively served many parishes and thousands upon thousands of worshippers in our Diocese with his gift of music. At the age of 94, he can still be heard playing the organ at two of the weekend masses, as well as funerals, at Saint Mary of the Immaculate Conception in Baltic.

To Advertise in the

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Inspiring Achievement. Celebrating Community. Embracing Service. Living Faith. Supported financially and spiritually by 10 parishes in the Middletown Deanery. Currently the only regional Pre-K to 8th grade school in the Norwich Diocese.

St. John Paul II Regional Catholic School 87 South Main Street / Middletown, CT 06457 Telephone: 860-347-2978 /

Four County Catholic Please Contact: Meredith Morrison (860) 887-3933

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Enjoy our full breakfast, stroll the beach and shops Visit the Monastery for daily Mass, devotions, and gift shop Choose from 65 rooms, with own AC, bath, and cable TV On the scenic trolley route Affordable rates and clergy discounts Retreat facilities

Franciscan Guest House A little taste of Heaven on Earth

26 Beach Avenue, Kennebunk, Maine 207-967-4865 or toll free1-844-253-2972 email

PARISH HISTORY OUR LADY OF SORROWS, ESSEX CT The historical committee of Our Lady of Sorrows Church, is engaged in a research project to document the history of its parish which dates to the 1800’s. We are searching for memorabilia from 1897-2017 such as: • Programs, pamphlets and flyers issued by the parish • Wedding photos showing the sanctuary or front of the church • First communion and confirmation photos • Baptismal photos showing part of the church interior • Group photos of parish organizations • Photos from parish sponsored activities • Old Parish bulletins • Medallions from parish organizations with the parish name • Photos of any vocations from the parish • Newspaper clippings on any parish activity

Independently Owned and Operated Since 1881

Steve Bennardo

Owner/Funeral Director 433 Main Street, Danielson, CT

25 Main Street, Central Village, CT



We are asking only to photograph or scan these items. We are not asking for them to be donated. We will come to you. Please contact chairman, Larry Bolanowski at (H) 860-581–8140 (C) 732-674-6052


• • • • • •


Our YOUTH Sacred Heart School, Groton

Dr. Gail Kingston, 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. James EdwardSchool, School,Danielson Stafford Springs LindaMaryAnne Marie Joyal, Principal Mrs. Pelletier, Principal 120 WaterSt, St,Stafford Danielson, CT CT 25 Church Springs, Phone: Phone: 860-774-3281 860-684-2600

St. Joseph School, North Grosvenordale

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

Academic Excellence. Character. Self-Confidence.

XBSS Leaders Chosen





(L to R): Joshua Terry, Stephanie Ruggiero, Burke Niles, Madeline Brady, Graham McCauley (Distinguished Senior Leader), Sarah Engel, and Samuel Davis.

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

even students were named Xaverian Brothers Sponsored Schools (XBSS) Leaders following a prayer service at Saint Bernard School. Juniors Joshua Terry, Stephanie Ruggiero, Burke Niles, Sarah Engel, Madeline Brady and Samuel Davis were named the junior leaders who will represent SBS at the XBSS retreat this spring. At this retreat, their faith will be nurtured and their leadership skills honed as they enjoy fellowship with students from the 12 other Xaverian schools in our network. Additionally, senior Graham McCauley was named the Distinguished Senior Leader. Graham attended the XBSS retreat last year as a junior and will return to retreat this year to embrace a significant mentoring role as a proven leader. “Graham describes himself as filled with zeal, someone who loves Saint Bernard’s and the servant hearts we nurture here,” said Campus Minister Renju Paul. He said that after attending last year’s retreat, Graham took seriously his commitment to bring back passion and service to SBS. “One of Theodore Ryken’s founding principles is falling in love with service of God,” Mr. Paul continued. “Graham has certainly lived out that call to serve with love.”

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

St. John School, Old Saybrook

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

OUR YOUTH St. John Paul II School, Middletown Mr. Lawrence Fitzgerald, Principal 87 South Main St, Middletown, CT Phone: 860-347-2978

St. Joseph School, New London

St. Joseph School, Baltic

Sr. Mary Patrick Mulready, SCMC, Principal

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

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

Full Day Kindergarten School Day from 8:30-2:30 After School Care Available Accredited by the New England Association of Schools & Colleges

25 Squire Street New London, CT For information call 860-442-1720

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

St. Bernard School, Uncasville

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

Full Day Kindergarten School Day from 8:30-2:30 After School Care Available Accredited by the New England Association of Schools & Colleges

25 Squire Street New London, CT For information call 860-442-1720

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

From the

Superintendent’s Office… My Dear Friends,

May this new year find you filled with God’s blessings Henry Fiore Jr.

Superintendent of Schools Diocese of Norwich

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

January 28th February 3rd


Henry Fiore Jr.

Academy of the Holy Family, Baltic

Catholic Schools Week 2018

Marianapolis Preparatory School, Thompson

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

Mercy High School, Middletown

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

Xavier High School, Middletown David C. Eustis, Headmaster Mr. Brendan Donohue, Principal 181 Randolph Road, Middletown, CT Phone: 860-346-7735


Every year, the National Catholic Educational Association places emphasis on Catholic Schools Week during the last week in January. This year, Catholic Schools Week runs from January 28 to February 3. The theme for Catholic Schools Week 2018 is “Catholic Schools – Learn. Serve. Lead. Succeed”. This is the time of re-registrations and new registrations for the following school year. I encourage all parents to visit our Catholic schools during the Open Houses held during this special week, and on other weeks to come. Once you enter our schools, I guarantee you that you will immediately feel the warmth of the Holy Spirit throughout the buildings. Our schools instill scholars who are prepared both academically and spiritually to become the next generation of our leaders. It gives me much hope when I visit the schools and see all of the faith and moral training come alive in the demeanor of our students, faculty, staff, and administration. We are not only providing high quality academic instruction, but also planting the seeds of faith and nourishing them to provide a moral compass and an innate desire to increase the quality of their worship and serve their neighbors in need. Actually, this will be the last January Catholic Schools Week for the Catholic schools in New England. At our New England Chief Administrators of Catholic Education (NECACE) recent meetings, collectively we have decided that for our New England Schools, it would be more conducive to celebrate Catholic Schools Week in the Fall, due to the potentially inclement weather in the Winter. Often times, much preparation has been undertaken for special events for parents, grandparents, and the community at large, only to be met with cancellation or postponement due to snow or ice. Accordingly, there will be two Catholic Schools Weeks this year, the traditional one in January, followed by the New England one at a date to be determined in the Fall. Beginning in 2019, the celebration of Catholic Schools Week will be in the Fall only on an annual basis. No matter what time of year we celebrate Catholic Schools Week, the important aspect is that our celebration of Catholic schools in the Diocese of Norwich is happening each and every day. Our students are the present-day disciples of Our Lord, growing in faith and love just as the original disciples did over two thousand years ago. I cannot thank the pastors, religious sisters and brothers, administrators, faculty and staff of our schools enough for the tremendous dedication they have displayed so humbly in our very important ministry of Catholic education. Please continue to pray for those in our ministry, especially the students for whom we all place at the center of this ministry, right beside Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.





By Shari L. Marderness


Saint Bernard Headmaster Honored with Ryken Award

he 2017 Ryken Award was presented to Saint Bernard School Headmaster Don Macrino following a prayer service on Dec. 1. The award is given annually to an adult member of the school community on the feast of St. Francis Xavier at each of the 13 Xaverian Brothers Sponsored Schools. The honor is named for Theodore James Ryken, founder of the Xaverian Brothers, and is presented to someone who lives their life according to the values of the Xaverian Brothers. Brother Lawrence Harvey CFX, chairman of the SBS Board of Directors, presented the award to Mr. Macrino. “As an educator for over 40 years, this person has shown that same level of dedication to education and to forming young people as he has shown to his own family and parish life,” Br. Harvey said. Mr. Macrino has maintained a lifelong commitment to the Catholic

honor the Catholic Church can bestow upon a member of the laity. In 1973, he began his career as an English teacher at New London High School. Since that time, he has served as dean of students at New London High School, principal of Clark Lane Middle School, and principal of Waterford High School. In 2014, he became headmaster of Saint Bernard School. “In often, humble and unsung ways, he has been a model teacher and administrator. … Here at St. Bernard School, students, teachers, parents, alumni and board members have come to have a profound respect for him.” The honor prompted a standing ovation from the audience, which included students, colleagues and Mr. Macrino’s wife and children. “Thank you. This is incredible,” he said. “I am deeply honored.” faith, and was honored by Bishop Cote in 2013 for his service to the Catholic Church and the Diocese

of Norwich. He received the Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice, Papal honor of the Venerable Cross - the highest

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


(Left to right):Treasurer Allison Vess of Cromwell; Vice President Katherine Hall of Clinton; President Juliana Claudio of Cromwell; Secretary Alison Chase of Haddam Neck


he Italian National Honor Society (Caterina di Siena) of Mercy High School sponsored a PJ Day in conjunction with CCMC (Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.) Students wore pajamas to school and were asked to donate one dollar or more to benefit the children at CCMC. PJ Day for the Kids is an

opportunity for students and business partners across the state to show support for patients at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center. Over the last 6 years, participants have worn PJ’s in honor of children at the hospital who must wear their PJ’s for extended periods of time while fighting cancer or other serious illnesses.

Catholic Swimmer Katie Ledecky AP Female Athlete of the Year

By Kelly Sankowski Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- The AP named Katie Ledecky the Female Athlete of the Year Dec. 26, after balloting by U.S. editors and news directors. Ledecky, a graduate of Little Flower School and Stone Ridge School of the Sacred Heart in Bethesda, Maryland, received 351 points in the vote, placing her ahead of tennis star Serena Williams, who received 343 points. The vote reflected Ledecky’s dominance in the July 2017 world championships in Budapest, Hungary, where she earned five gold medals and one silver medal. Ledecky first entered the world stage as a 15-year-old in the 2012 London Olympics, the summer after her freshman year at Stone Ridge. In that competition, she surprised people around the world by winning a gold medal in the women’s 800-meter freestyle and finishing the race in record time. In 2016, she returned to the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro and won gold in the 200-, 400-, and 800-meter freestyle races, gold in the 4x200 freestyle relay, and silver in the 4x100 freestyle relay. Ledecky is known for setting lofty goals for herself and achieving them, working hard and taking part in grueling workout schedules. Another part of her routineis praying before races. “I do say a prayer -- or two -- before any race,” Ledecky said. “The Hail Mary is a beautiful prayer and I find that it calms me.” Now a sophomore at Stanford University, Ledecky also said that

attending Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Washington helped make her the person she is today. “I received an excellent, faith-filled education at both schools. Having the opportunity to attend academically rigorous schools has facilitated my interest in the world and in serving others, and has enriched my life so that it is not solely focused on my swimming and athletics,” she said. She said going to these schools was also important to her swimming because they challenged her and broadened her perspective and “allowed me to use my mind in ways that take me beyond just thinking about swim practices, swim meets and sports.” In March 2017, Ledecky became the youngest-ever inductee in the Maryland Women’s Hall of Fame, joining other esteemed women such as Harriet Tubman, Rachel Carson, Clara Barton, and St. Elizabeth Ann Seton. Now, Ledecky is preparing for this coming March, when she will compete in the NCAA championships with her Stanford teammates. During the Olympics, she said she was “just praying to do my very best to represent my country.” “I always use my faith to think, ‘I have been given this gift, and I want to use it to the best of my ability,’” she said, adding that she doesn’t want it to end there. She hopes her accomplishments will “inspire somebody or make an impact of some sort beyond just getting a gold medal.”


Students Raise $615 for CCMC and the PJ Day for Kids



Pope Francis... “Our Father” Could Be More Accurately Translated




By Elise Harris, CNA atican City- In a video series for Italian television network TV2000, Pope Francis said that “lead us not into temptation” is a poorly translated line of the Our Father. “This is not a good translation,” the Pope said in the video, published Dec. 6. “I am the one who falls, it’s not (God) who pushes me toward temptation to see how I fall. A father doesn’t do this, a father helps us to get up right away.” He noted that this line was recently re-translated in the French version of the prayer to read “do not let me fall into temptation.” The Latin version of the prayer, the authoritative version in the Catholic Church, reads “ne nos inducas in tentationem.” The Pope said that the one who leads people into temptation “is Satan; that is the work of Satan.” He said that the essence of that line in the prayer is like telling God: “when Satan leads me into temptation, please, give me your hand. Give me your hand.” Just as Jesus gave Peter his hand to help him out of the water when he began to sink, the prayer also asks God to “give me your hand so that I don’t drown,” Pope Francis said. In his question to Pope Francis on the line “lead us not into temptation,” the interviewer noted that many people have asked him how God can lead someone into 26 temptation, and questioned what the

phrase actually intends to say. The question is one of the reasons the French bishops decided to make a request for a new translation of the Our Father that they believe conveys the meaning more clearly. According to the French episcopal conference, the decision to make the change was accepted by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments in June 2013. The new translation, released Dec. 3 to mark the first day of Advent and the beginning of the new liturgical year, now reads “ne nous laisse pas entrer en tentation,” meaning, “do not let us fall into temptation,” versus the former “ne nous soumets pas à la tentation,” or “lead us not into temptation.” The Pope’s remarks do not change the translations of liturgical texts. Such a change would begin with a resolution by an episcopal conference in English-speaking countries. In a previous episode of the “Our Father” series, Pope Francis said “it takes courage” to recite the prayer, because it means calling on someone else and truly believing that “God is the Father who accompanies me, forgives me, gives me bread, is attentive to everything I ask, and dresses me better than wildflowers.” “To believe is a great risk,” and means daring to make the leap of faith, he said. Because of this, “praying together is so beautiful: because we help each other to dare.”

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Saint Vincent dePaul in Norwich & Middletown Provide Warmth and Food During Blizzard Brody

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FCC NewsDesk aint Teresa of Calcutta (aka Mother Teresa) told her sisters to remember the “Gospel on Five Fingers.” She would say the words, “You did it for Me,” as she held up each finger of her hand. These words come from Matthew 25:31-46, where Jesus tells us that we will be judged by how we treated those who were thirsty or hungry or sick. One example of this occurred during the recent blizzard, as reported by WFSB Channel 3. While other businesses and agencies throughout the area were closing, it was business as usual at two diocesan ministries. Saint Vincent dePaul directors in Norwich and Middletown, with financial support from the Diocese, live the Gospel call daily, despite the weather.

Ron Krom, Director of Saint Vincent dePaul Middletown told WFSB Channel 3, “Our intention is to make sure there is a place for all those people, pretty much 24 hours a day.” A big concern during these frigid temperatures is the homeless. “We’re paying attention to the folks that we normally would house and letting them know that there is a place for them 24 hours a day for the next few days.” Jill Corbin, director of the Saint Vincent dePaul Place in Norwich, along with her staff, fed over 40 people during the height of Thursdays blizzard. When asked why they were open when others were closed she said, “People rely on us for food, a warm place to get out of the cold and a smile.”

Urgent Request for Assistance “We love our neighbor as being made in the image of God and as an object of His love.” - Saint Vincent de Paul

Our soup kitchens and pantries are in urgent need of food. St. Vincent de Paul Middletown


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St.Vincent de Paul Place Norwich 860-889-7374


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Defending Our Religious Liberty Religious freedom is a precious right. It is also a necessary right – necessary for all people and all societies if they are to flourish. Scholars have shown that when religious freedom for all is protected in law and valued in culture, it brings with it political stability, equality for women, economic growth, and social harmony. Let us pray that when the federal health care mandate is changed, religious freedom is safeguarded for all people.

Preparing for Historic 2018 March for Life

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s the diocesan young people prepare for their trip to Washington, D.C. in just a few days now to participate in the pro-life March for Life, those of us here at home can watch the event live on EWTN. Broadcasting will begin on Friday, January 19, the day marking the 43rd anniversary of the tragic U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion. Since then, some 60 million children have been deprived of the chance to be born. Being champions of the Gospel of Life is really about changing hearts and building a civilization of love. Young people are a vital part of the Church -- peacefully demonstrating, witnessing and Marching for Life! And they pray. And we can too. Together, our love and prayers will change the hearts and minds of the people of our nation and overcome the culture of death. One heart at a time. Love saves lives!




You Can Understand

The Bible!



An 8-Part Study Featuring Jeff Cavins


Dates, Times, Location

Presented by the Groton - Ledyard Cluster of Parishes at St Mary Mother of the Redeemer Parish Hall 69 Long Point Road, Groton.

Led by Deacons Doug Hoffman & Bill McGann Wednesday Evenings 7-8:30pm February 7, 21, 28; March 7, 14, 21, 28; April 4.


$25.00 (Materials - payable at 1st or 2nd session) (Materials may be shared by two attendees) To register, please call one of the below listed parishes or email

For More Information

Sacred Heart, Groton...860-445-2905 St. Mary Mother of the Redeemer... 860-445-1446 Our Lady of Lourdes, Gales Ferry ...860-464-7251

A Quick Journey Through the Bible provides an excellent introduction and overview of Scripture from a Catholic perspective. This eight part series, presented by Jeff Cavins, covers salvation history from beginning to end. The complexity of the Bible is made accessible through an easy-to-follow narrative approach, and an ingenious color-coded Bible Timeline. As you begin to understand the Bible, you will develop a greater understanding for your faith, a deeper experience of the sacraments, and a closer relationship to Christ.

“The effect on my parishioners has been wonderful: a deeper love for Christ, a deeper experience with the sacraments, and continued love for the Scriptures.” —Fr. Becker, Minnesota

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Two “Bucket List” Catholic Pilgrimages Announced OctOber 1-9 2018

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Four County Catholic January 2018  
Four County Catholic January 2018  

January 2018 Edition of the Four County Catholic- The official Publication of the Diocese of Norwich, Connecticut.