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Volume 23 Number 10

November 2011

Reverend Kevin M. Reilly, Pastor, St. Patrick Church, Mystic, reviewing the revised English translation of the 3rd edition of the Roman Missal. Photo by Susannah H. Snowden

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Four County Catholic November 2011

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Four County Catholic November 2011

The Most Reverend

Michael R. Cote, D.D.

Bishop of Norwich

The Harvest Season My Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ: As we approach the harvest season of thanksgiving, we all recognize these are far from ordinary times. There has been no appreciable letup in the recession and little evidence of an economic turnaround any time soon. Congress remains gridlocked. Much of the world is suffering either political unrest, economic hardship or both. Tough times. These are times that remind us who we are as faithful followers of Christ. We are, as described in my previous column, “people of hope.” No matter how harsh the going gets, we remain hopeful knowing that “God is love and to worship Him means to serve our brothers and sisters with sincere and generous love.” Our living faith does not accept turning away from those who most need our

help. Every one of us is either personally affected by the continuing recession or we know of someone or many who are unemployed, underemployed or marginally able to earn enough to survive financially. How is the spirit of thanksgiving appropriate and alive at a time like this? It is. It is because we live by God’s grace in a Country of opportunity with the privilege to worship freely – a place that provides the space and light for hope to prosper. The first settlers who celebrated a thankful meal with the native Wanpanoag Americans at this same time of year, not all that far from our easternmost diocesan border, were very much in precarious survival mode. Not a recession by contemporary definition. Worse. Much worse. They needed a successful harvest to store enough

food to survive another winter ahead. They were thankful for the friendships and cooperation and opportunity to pull together and take on another winter. I’ve heard it said that these hearty souls weren’t thankful that they survived…as much as they survived because they were thankful. This sentiment speaks to the strength of the Christian faith in action. It is as true during these challenging times as it was in 1621 – and as it was in 1863 when Abraham Lincoln invited a divided Nation to “set aside and observe a day of thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the heavens”. The spirit of Thanksgiving in this great land has always been closely aligned with the spirit of Christian love for our fellow travelers. Presidential Thanksgiving Day proclamations have tradition-

ally born this out. There was some question about a departure from any reference to God in the 2009 proclamation. Last year, however, our President returned to a more traditional recognition of the source of our most precious gifts. Said the President, “Let us rejoice in the abundance that graces our tables, in the simple gifts that mark our days, in the loved ones who enrich our lives, and in the gifts of a gracious God. Let us recall that our forebears met their challenges with hope and an unfailing spirit, and let us resolve to do the same.” Our community of faith in the Diocese has found the love, energy, wherewithal and spirit of giving to help families across our 76 parishes, including and embracing many non-Catholic brothers and sisters in need. We are truly thankful, together, for the extraordinary good works of Catholic Charities,

Habitat for Humanity, the St. Vincent de Paul kitchens and pantries, Project Northeast, the Catholic Foundation assisting families with Catholic school tuition, pastoral care in our community hospitals, the diocesan prison ministries, the many ministries supported by the Annual Catholic Appeal, outreach to Haiti and Chile and so many of your personal acts of kindness and generosity. This is our 21st Century harvest of compassion and hope. May you receive God’s special blessings and graces for all you have done to bring His love to those in need. May the Lord continue to bless you and your loved ones abundantly. The joy of thanksgiving is very much with us. Sincerely yours in Christ’s love, Bishop Michael R. Cote

La Temporada de Cosecha Queridos hermanos y hermanas en Cristo: A medida que nos acercamos a la temporada de cosecha de acción de gracias, todos reconocemos que estos tiempos están lejos de ser comunes. No ha habido una disminución apreciable en la recesión y hay una poca evidencia de recuperación económica a corto plazo. El Congreso se mantiene paralizado. Gran parte de el mundo está sufriendo ya sea por la inestabilidad politica, dificultades económicas o ambas. Son tiempos difíciles. Estos son tiempos que nos recuerdan quienes somos como seguidores fieles de Cristo. Somos, como descrito en mi columna previa, “gente de esperanza.” No importa cuanto de penosas las cosas marchen, nosotros nos mantemos

esperanzados, sabiendo que “Dios es amor y venerarlo significa servir a nuestros hermanos y hermanas con amor sincero y generoso.” Nuestra fé viva no acepta rechazar a aquellos que más necesitan de nuestra ayuda. Cada uno de nosotros está personalmente afectado por la continuación de la recesión o conocemos a alguien o a muchos de los que están desempleados, subempleados o incapacitados de ganar lo suficiente para sobrevivir económicamente. ¿Como está vivo el espíritu apropiado de acción de gracias en un momento como éste?. Lo está. Lo está porque vivimos por gracia de Dios en un país de oportunidades con el privilegio de asistir al culto libremente- un lugar que ofrece espacio y luz de esperanza

para prosperar. Los primeros colonizadores que celebraron los alimentos de agradecimiento con la tribu nativa Wanpanoag en esta misma epoca del año, más al este no tan lejos desde nuestro borde diocesano, eran mucho más inestables en su modo de sobrevivencia No había una recesión por estándares contemporáneos. Peor. Mucho peor. Necesitaban una cosecha exitosa para almacenar suficiente comida para sobrevivir otro invierno más adelante. Ellos estaban agradecidos por la amistad y cooperación y oportunidad de salir a flote juntos y desafiar otro invierno. Yo he oído que esas almas bondadosas no estaban agradecidas por haber sobrevivido… tanto como sobrevivieron porque eran agradecidas. Este sentimiento habla de la

Fortaleza de la Fé Cristiana en acción. Es tan verdadera en estos tiempos desafiantes como lo fué en 1621- y como fué en 1863, cuando Abraham Lincoln invitó a una nación dividida a “separar y observar un día de acción de gracias y alabanza a nuestro Padre protector que habita en los cielos”. El espíritu de Acción de Gracias en este gran país siempre ha estado estrechamente vinculado con el espíritu de amor Cristiano por nuestro prójimo. Tradicionalmente las Proclamaciones presidenciales de Día de Acción de Gracias ven esto innato. Había alguna pregunta a cerca de la ausencia de toda mención a Dios en la proclamación en el 2009. Sin embargo, el año pasado nuestro presidente regresó a un reconocimiento más tradicional a la fuente de nuestros más

preciosos dones. El presidente dijo, “Regocijemos en la abundancia que adornan nuestras mesas, en los regalos simples que marcan nuestros días, en los seres queridos que enriquecen nuestras vidas, y en los dones de la gracia de Dios. Recordemos que nuestros antepasados cumplieron sus retos con esperanza y un espíritu inquebrantable, y resolvamos hacer lo mismo.” Nuestra comunidad de fé en la Diócesis ha encontrado el amor, energia, medios y el espíritu de dar para ayudar a las familias a través de nuestras 76 parroquias, incluyendo y abarcando a muchos hermanos y hermanas no Católicos en necesidad. Estamos verdaderamente agradecidos, juntos , por las extraordinarias buenas La Temporada Cont. on page 4


Four County Catholic November 2011

La Temporada

Couples Renew Wedding Vows at the Silver and Gold Jubilee Anniversary Mass Married couples from parishes throughout the Norwich Diocese came to participate in their Celebration of God’s By Susan Williams Gift of Love in the The Office of Family Life Sacrament of Marriage at the Annual Silver and Gold Jubilee Anniversary Mass at the Cathedral of St. Patrick on Sunday, October 16th. Couples celebrating their silver, gold or other anniversary significant to the couple renewed their marriage vows at the Pontifical Mass celebrated by Bishop Michael R. Cote and witnessed by family and friends. Along with all couples present, seven couples celebrated sixty or more years of marriage. Certificates blessing the marriages of couples who were present were awarded by Bishop Michael R. Cote. Following the Mass, celebrating couples along with their family and friends enjoyed spending time with Bishop Cote in the Cathedral Hall. Refreshments were enjoyed by all.

Cont. from page 3

obras de Caridad Católica, Habitat para la Humanidad, las cocinas y despensas de San Vicent De Paul , El Proyecto Noreste , la Fundación Católica asistiendo a las familias con matrículas de escuela Católica, la atención pastoral en los hospitales de nuestra comunidad, los ministerios de prisión diocesano, los muchos ministerios de apoyo de la Campaña Católica Anual, la extensión a Haiti y Chile, y muchos de sus actos personales de bondad y generosidad. Este es nuestro siglo 21 cosecha de compasión y esperanza. Reciba de Dios una bendición especial e indultos por todo lo que ha hecho para llevar Su amor a aquellos en necesidad. Que el Señor continúe bendiciendo en abundancia a usted y a sus seres queridos. La alegría de Acción de Gracias está con nosotros. Sinceramente en el amor de Cristo, Obispo Michael R. Cote Translated by Paulina Angulo

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December 18-23 Advent Silent Directed Retreat with Sister Eugenia Brady, S.J.C.

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Four County Catholic November 2011

Director of Priestly Vocations

Reverend Gregory Galvin

God’s Generous Gifts Recently I was struck by the simple reminders I read in an article on Priestly and Religious VocationsGenerous Gifts from God written by Rev. Thomas Nelson, O. Praem. In the article he wrote about common myths and misconceptions regarding vocations. I think focusing on those myths and misconceptions would be helpful to us all as we continue to strive to build a culture of vocations in our diocese and better identify those who are being called to priestly or religious vocations. Fr. Nelson discusses five different myths about vocations. They are: 1. “Priests and religious are “super” Christians or you have to be perfect or a “holy Joe.” Or said another way, “priests, sisters and brother are automatically holier than other Catholics”. 2. “Celibacy means a loveless, lonely, unhappy life”. 3. “The misunderstanding of the special nature of religious consecration”. 4. “The fear that they are limiting their children’s freedom, that parents are forcing their own will upon them”. 5. “Priestly and religious vocations are rare and exceptional”. Let’s review each one. First there are no “perfect” or “super” priests or religious because we are all human and all sinners! It is true as Fr. Nelson states that “religious and priests are committed to strive for holiness” but we must remember that is part of the call we all have received. Religious and priests are called to be examples to all the world of that commitment being lived out in everyday life. “Celibacy means a loveless, lonely, unhappy life”. Certainly no parent wants their kids to enter into a life that will make them unhappy. Think about this point; when one enters into a celibate relationship, priestly or religious, they are work-

ing with God who is always faithful, who is Love. If there is failure in such a relationship, it’s from the human side not the divine. Regarding the “misunderstanding of the special nature of religious consecration”, Fr. Nelson reminds his reader that instead of looking at vocations from a democratic mindset, where vocations would be looked at as all equal in God’s eyes, we must look at vocations from the perspective of the order of grace, by which the very nature of such a vocation is specifically ordered to a unique intimacy through prayer and contemplation with Christ. Not everyone is called to be a priest or consecrated religious. We are reminded in the Gospel of Luke 12:48, that “to whom much is given, much will be expected”. In responding to the concern about limiting their children’s freedom, Father Nelson points out that this is a completely unfounded fear! Why? Because as he points out, “the preparation and formation for reli-

gious life and priesthood is too rigorous and long for it to be just based on emotional “feeling” without really understanding what it is all about”. Finally regarding priestly and religious vocations being rare and exceptional, by the fact that many of the seminaries around the country are presently full helps us to point out the falsity of such a statement. Fr. Nelson, though, says it even better as he writes, “It is a lie of the devil to say that a vocation to the consecrated life is rare and exceptional. No, Our Lord is generous and most generous with His choicest gifts. The call to consecrated life is not rare and exceptional but common and ordinary. What is rare and exceptional is our generous response to God’s generous gifts. Therefore, as we continue praying for an increase of priestly and religious vocations for our diocese, we must remember to pray that those God is calling will recognize the call and respond with a generous heart.

Holy Hour for Vocations The Holy Hour for Vocations is held in a different deanery and parish each month. Bishop Cote will lead the prayers of the Holy Hour each month. The schedule is as follows: Nov. 17 Dec. 15

Mary Mother of the Redeemer, Groton Our Lady of the Lakes, Oakdale

7-8pm 5-6pm

VACATION IN KENNEBUNK BEACH, MAINE! Franciscan Guest House & Retreat Facilities Stroll the beach, Kennebunkport shops, and enjoy our pool. • Visit the beautiful Monastery, with daily Mass, gift shop, and shrines. • Choose from 65 rooms, with own AC, Bath, and Cable TV. • Auditorium for Groups. • On the Scenic Trolley route.

“Jesus rebuked him and the demon came out of him. The disciples said, ‘Why could we not drive it out?” Jesus said, ‘Because of your little fai h. Amen I say to you, if you have fai h he size of a mustard seed (minimal), you will say to his mountain ( he impossible), ‘Move’ and it will move! NOTHING…

...Nothing will be impossible for you!” (Matthew 17:18-21) Television Mass Wednesday, November 2, 2011 at 10:00 AM Channel 20 WTXX Celebrant: Fr. Ray Introvigne 2011 National Leader & Ministries Conference November 4 through 6, 2011 in Baltimore, MD Philip Retreat Weekend (Head to Heart Experience) Saturday, November 5, 2011 at 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM Sunday, November 6, 2011 at 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM Spiritual Renewal Services Center (Pre-registration is required by calling 1-860-887-0702.) Combined Prayer Meeting Wednesday, November 9, 2011 at 7:30 PM St. Mary Church, 51 Freestone Avenue, Portland, CT 06480 Combined Prayer Meeting Wednesday, November 9, 2011 at 7:30 PM St. Mary Church, 51 Freestone Avenue, Portland, CT 06480 Prayer and Discernment Board Meetings Monday, November 14, 2011 at 11:15 AM Spiritual Renewal Services Center Prayer, Praise, Worship and Adoration Every Tuesday, 7:00 PM Spiritual Renewal Services Center

Spiritual Renewal Services Diocese of Norwich

Dial A Prayer (860) 887-7767 P.O. Box 6, 11 Bath St. Norwich, CT 06360 (860) 887-0702 Email:


Every Tuesday Night • 7:00pm Spiritual Renewal Services Center Prayer, Praise, Worship & Adoration Saturday-Sunday, November 5-6 Philip Retreat Weekend Head to Heart Experience Spiritual Renewal Services Center, 11 Bath Street, Norwich. Weekend is $25.00 per person. Pre-registration required. Saturday from 9:00am4:00pm, and on Sunday from 9:00am-1:00pm. 860-887-0702. Saturday, November 5 Holiday Fair St. Mary Church, 1600 Main St. (Rt. 31) Coventry, invites you to join them at their one day Holiday Fair, from 9:00am -2:00pm. Booths include: Small Raffle, Country Cupboard & Bakery, Christmas Shoppe and more. For information call 860742-0681.

Four County Catholic November 2011

Saturday, November 5 Sleigh Bells Ring” Christmas Fair The annual “Sleigh Bells Ring” Christmas Fair will be held from 10:00am – 7:00pm in the St. Pius X Bill Fortin Memorial Hall, 310 Westfield St., Middletown. 10:00am. Free admission. Featured booths include Arts and Crafts, Country Store, Gourmet Coffee, Fresh Baked Goods, Kids Booth, 5050 Raffle & more. Raffle tickets & more information at 860-347-4441. Wednesday, November 9 Combined Prayer Meeting At 7:30pm at St. Mary Church, 51 Freestone Avenue, Portland. Saturday-Sunday, November 12-13 Toys for Tots G Gauge Train Display Knights of Columbus, Our Lady of the Lakes Council 8903 with the Mohegan Pequot Model Railroad

Club and the Central Connecticut G Gaugers Club presents a G Gauge (Large Scale) Train Display on Saturday November 12, 2011 from 11:00 am-3:00pm, and Sunday November 13, 2011 from 12:00 pm3:00 pm. The display will be located in the Church Hall of Our Lady of the Lakes Church, 742 NorwichSalem Turnpike, Oakdale. Friday-Sunday, November 11-13 Marriage Encounter Weekend For couples desiring to experience a richer and loving life together. Rediscover each other for an entire weekend with a heart-to-heart marriage encounter. To register for the next weekend in Willimantic or for more information please call 860-6447260 or email: Monday, November 14, 2011 Prayer and Discernment Board Meetings At 11:15am, Spiritual Renewal Services Center. Monday, November 14, 2011 Natural Family Planning Classes For married and engaged couples (NFP) the Sympto-Thermal Method is scientifically sound, helps with fertility problems, easily learned and

99% effective both for conceiving a child or responsibly postponing conception. 3- Part monthly class begins at 7:00pm at St John’s Church in Old Saybrook. Please call 860-3998265 or to register for a NFP class or Home Study Course go to Friday, November 18 Seton Scholarship Dinner The Diocese of Norwich and the Office of Catholic Schools invites you to attend the annual Seton Scholarship Dinner honoring the recipients of the 1st Annual Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D. Award for contributions to Catholic education at The Riverhouse at Goodspeed Station, Haddam, from 6:30pm10:30 pm. Tickets are $150 per person. All proceeds benefit Catholic Schools within the Diocese. For information, please contact 860-887-4086. To purchase tickets go to Saturday, November 19 St. Maurice Church Annual Sleigh Bells Ring Christmas Fair

For Active Duty, Retired & Reserve Personnel, Veterans, Veterans’ Organizations & Auxiliaries of all Faiths Sunday, November 13th 10:15am Cathedral of St. Patrick 213 Broadway, Norwich CT The Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D., Bishop of Norwich, Celebrant For more information, please call 860.887.9294

All are invited to the 41st annual Christmas Fair from 9:00am-3:00pm at 32 Hebron Road, Bolton. Enjoy handmade treasures including dolls, stuffed animals, greens and custom ornaments. Hot food, free admission and free parking. Call 860-6460564. Sunday, November 27 Messiah Concert Saint Peter Church in Higganum will salute the beginning of Advent by hosting the New England Chamber Choir and its performance of George Frideric Handel’s Messiah, Part One. Richard Wm. Donohue, Director of Music at Saint Peter Church will be conducting and accompanying the concert. Further details at Saturday, December 3 St. Joseph Church Annual Christmas Fair St. Joseph Church will be holding its Annual Christmas Fair from 9:00am2:00pm at 48 Middlesex Avenue, Chester. Over 30 vendors will be present. Luncheon, Silent Auction, Dixie Baskets, Children's area and much more. Raffle items include 22" Lawnmower, Chainsaw and Trimmer; iPad; Bowe Music System to name a few Saturday, December 10 Mount Saint John Christmas Boutique Crafters and artisans will display their wares at the First Annual Mount Saint John Christmas Boutique from 10:00am-3:00pm, 135 Kirtland Street, Deep River, CT. Enjoy live entertainment by the Mount Saint John Christmas Choir and Visit with Santa. Homemade soup, sandwiches and beverages available for purchase. The school’s culinary program is featuring a bake sale. Shop for your entire gift giving this season: Admission is free! For more information or to reserve your table as a vendor, please contact Vicki McKenney at 860-343-1340 or Saturday, December 10 Festival of Angels Fair Come join us for a day of fun at the Fox Parish Center of St. Francis Church, 10 Elm Street, Middletown for the Festival of Angels. The fair runs from 9:00am-2:00pm. There will be a wide variety of artisan vendors, grandma’s attic, raffle items and baked goods. Food to include homemade soups, chili and grinders.


Four County Catholic November 2011


19th Annual Firefighters & EMS Mass Area firefighters and EMS responders gathered at the Cathedral of Saint Patrick in Norwich By Donna Antonacci

on October 8th to pay homage to their “fallen brothers and sisters” at the 19th annual Mass. The annual Firefighters/EMS Mass is very important to the brave men and women who believe that what they do is not merely a job, but a calling. Taftville’s “pride of the village” were in attendance again. Taftville firefighters take the event very seriously. Some attend whether on duty or not. This special Mass shows their reverence for God’s guidance and protection as they protect others. They respectfully paid tribute to Saint Florian, their patron and Saint Michael, the Archangel and protector. The event began as fire trucks solemnly paraded down Broadway toward the Cathedral, lights flashing and the sound of bagpipes and drums in the air. At the Cathedral they created an archway with the tall ladders from the Cromwell and Mohegan Tribe trucks. Over 100 firefighters and EMS workers marched into the Cathedral lead by Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, Bishop of Norwich, Monsignors Brown and

Rosaforte, several priests and deacons, and uniformed Knights of Columbus. Firefighters and EMS workers attended in full dress uniform with their families standing by them. Celebrant Bishop Cote welcomed the guests and praised the brave men and woman firefighters and EMS. The Gospel of Matthew 22:1-14 was read by Deacon William Herrman illustrating the wedding banquet parable where “many are invited, but few are chosen.” It is perfect and appropriate for firefighters and EMS workers who many believe are in a chosen profession. Reverend Robert J. Post, from Stamford, gave the homily. Reverend Post, a former Brother and now a priest in the Bridgeport Diocese serving as Chaplain/Deputy Chief at The Stamford Fire Rescue Department, acknowledged that he has been a fire service chaplain since 1982. But since September 11, 2001, he has felt a deeper connection to firefighters, and gained new vision about their great sacrifice. He spoke of this in his homily and spoke of his respect for their calling. He stressed the importance of their work and how proud he is to serve them whether they are grieving for their

colleagues, friends or relatives, or rejoicing during happy occasions like weddings and baptisms. Area firefighters from Baltic, Yantic and Portland also participated in the Mass as altar servers and readers. Following communion, there was the reading of the honor roll of the fallen from prior years to present. After each year, the silver firefighters’ bell rang from the altar echoing loudly in the solemn silence of the moment. Then Bishop Cote recognized the families of Lieutenant Steven Velasquez, Firefighter Michael Baik and Firefighter Robert Watts who were most recently departed. The Connecticut Firefighters Pipes and Drums gathered again at the altar to play “Amazing Grace” for the honored dead. We sang “How Great Thou Art” along with the “The Star Spangled Banner”, and firefighters lead the recessional “Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory”. The two ladder trucks now were turned toward the cathedral providing the gateway at the end of the sidewalk. The Mass was a beautiful synergy of prayer, patriotism, duty and honor. It is a great tribute to those who can never receive enough prayerful gratitude and honor for their dedication.

SETON SCHOLARSHIP DINNER Honoring the recipients of the First Annual Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D. Award for contributions to Catholic Education in the Diocese of Norwich:

Reverend Joseph Castaldi Robert E. Miller, Ph.D.

 FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 2011 THE RIVERHOUSE AT GOODSPEED STATION HADDAM, CT 6:30 P.M. - 10:30 P.M. $150 PER PERSON All proceeds to benefit tuition assistance for Catholic Schools.

Please R S.V.P. to: Diocese of Norwich Catholic Schools Office Ann Crooks, Development Coordinator 43 Perkins Avenue, Norwich, CT 06360 Checks payable to: DSO Seton Scholarship or to pay by credit card: For more information please call (860) 887-4086


Four County Catholic November 2011

Senior de los Milagros Celebration Honors Centuries of Peruvian Tradition The first annual diocesan Senior de los Milagros (Lord of Miracles) procession and Mass was By Michael Strammiello

celebrated at the Cathedral of St. Patrick in Norwich, October 14, 2011. The tradition of this celebration dates back to 17th Century Lima, Peru where a mural of the crucifixion of Christ was left standing after a devastating earthquake had destroyed the church around it and most of the city. This same mural would survive other future earthquakes and would be associated with many miraculous incidents. In honor of the miraculous painting, a likeness of the image was taken out into the streets of Lima creating a tradition that has evolved into the largest procession of its kind in the world. This year, this great celebration was renewed here in the Norwich Diocese by Catholic faithful of Peruvian ancestry who comprise one of the largest growing branches of the diocesan family. In the Diocese of Norwich this

great celebration has been celebrated for several years as a parish event at St. Mary Star of the Sea in New London with hundreds processing through the streets singing, praying and taking turns carrying the image. Next year’s diocesan celebration, already in the planning stages, will be expanded and will continue the tradition of a joyful procession from the Cathedral, through the streets of Norwich and returning to the Cathedral, carrying a likeness of the Senor de los Milagros painting decorated with abundant flowers and purple ribbons on a regal platform draped with intricately designed tapestry and carried on the shoulders of an honor guard dressed in purple robes. The Mass was celebrated by the Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, Bishop of Norwich. A full Cathedral also enjoyed a stirring homily by Deacon Jesus Canseco. Concelebrant, Father Marty Jones, was a key organizational leader throughout the planning of the event.

Image of Senior de los Milagros in procession inside Cathedral. Event organizer, Noe Serna carrying the adorned platform with son, Noe. Also shown are Mercedes, Mauricio and Jonaton Serna Photo submitted by Noe Serna.

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La Celebración de El Señor De Los Milagros Honra Siglos de Tradición Peruana La primera misa y procesión anual diocesana de El Señor DE Los Milagros (Lord Of Miracles) fue celebrada en la Por Michael Strammiello Translated by Paulina Angulo

Catedral de San Patricio en Norwich, en el 14 de Octubre de 2011. La tradición de esta celebración remonta al Siglo 17 en Lima, Perú, donde una pintura mural de la crucifixión de Cristo quedó en pie después de que un devastador terremoto hubo destruído los alrededores de la iglesia y la mayor parte de la ciudad. Esta misma pintura mural sobreviría otros terremotos futuros y estaría asociada a muchos sucesos milagrosos. En honor a la pintura milagrosa, un retrato de la imagen fué sacado hacia el interior de las calles de Lima creando una tradición que ha evolucionado dentro de su género a la procesión más grande en el mundo. Este año, esta gran celebración fué reanudada aquí en la Diócesis de Norwich por fieles Católi-

cos de descendencia Peruana quienes constituyen una de las ramas crecientes más grandes de la familia diocesana. En la Diócesis de Norwich esta gran celebración ha sido celebrada por varios años como un evento parroquial en Santa María Estrella del Mar en New London con cientos en procesión por las calles cantando, rezando y tomando turnos para cargar la imagen. La celebración de el próximo año, ya está en la etapa de planificación para ampliar, será ampliada y continuará la tradición de una alegre procesión desde la Catedral hacia las calles de Norwich retornando a la Catedral, llevando un retratro de la pintura de El Señor De Los Milagros decorada con abundantes flores y cintas púrpuras en una esplendida plataforma cubierta de intrincados diseños de tapicería y llevada en los hombros de un guardia de honor vestido en túnica púrpura. La misa fué celebrada por el Más

Reverendo Michael R. Cote, Obispo de Norwich. La Catedral llena también disfrutó una homilía conmovedora por el Diácono Jesús Canseco. El Padre Marty Jones, concelebrante, fué un líder organizacional clave a través de la planificación de el evento. Esta extraordinaria tradición se ha establecido ahora en la Diócesis y espera reunir aún más apoyo el próximo año como una verdadera experiencia religiosa y cultural combinando una

misa en la Catedral con una procesión más grande con música y festejo para seguir después de la misa en una localización que será determinada. Detalles avanzados de el evento de el próximo año serán publicados en este periódico cuando estén disponibles. Pintura de la imagen que ha sido tomada en la pocesión en ese Octubre- la tradición que continúa hasta nuestros días.

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Four County Catholic November 2011

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Four County Catholic November 2011

Concluding Rites and a New Beginning These few thoughts about the Concluding Rites, the fourth division of the Mass, can be considBy Sister Elissa Rinere, CP, JCD Office of Worship

ered a continuation of last month’s article concerning the Liturgy of the Eucharist. Every celebration of Mass has a purpose and a plan. Basically, the ritual is divided into four parts; Introductory Rites, Liturgy of the Word, Liturgy of the Eucharist and Concluding Rites. The celebration as a whole takes on its true character only when we understand the progression and meaning of each individual part. After the Eucharist has been distributed and all have returned to their places, there is a period of si-

lence to allow for personal prayer and thanksgiving for the reception of the Eucharist. This time of silence is ended when the priest prays the “post-communion” prayer, the last of the three

presidential prayers he proclaims in the name of the whole community. All the people respond to the prayer with an “Amen!” This is the end of the Liturgy of the Eucharist, and then begins the Concluding Rite: the announcements, the blessing and the dismissal. The main point of the Concluding Rite is to prepare the congrega-

tion to go forth and put the Eucharist into action in their lives. The announcements, hopefully, give information about events calling for time and talent of the parishioners. The blessing imparted by the priest serves as a reminder to the people of their holiness, and also serves as a parting gesture to the community. The final dialogue of the Mass comes next, when either the priest or the deacon dismisses the congregation. The Latin words for the dismissal are, and have always been, Ite, missa est (Go forth, the Mass is ended). However, because this sending forth of the community is so important, there are several options available in the new translation of the Roman Missal, all intended to emphasize the importance of the mission of the Baptized. The priest or deacon will have a

choice of any one of the following four phrases: Go forth, the mass is ended. Go and announce the Gospel of the Lord. Go in peace, glorifying the Lord by your life. Go in peace. To each of these, the acclamation of the people is “Thanks be to God!” The acclamation expresses agreement with the commission to live the Gospel, as well as thanksgiving for the privilege of having participated in the celebration of the Eucharist. The last action of the Mass is the procession of the priest, deacon and lay ministers out of the church, while either the congregation sings the closing hymn of thanksgiving or the choir or instrumentalists provide the music. The drama in four acts is concluded. Some food for thought: Is the

period of silence following Communion observed and used well in your parish? In your parish, do all the people return to their seats after receiving Communion, or do many of them leave? Do the people hear and respond to the words of the Dismissal with a true sense of being commissioned to put their faith into action? In just a few weeks, on November 27th, we begin using the new translation of the Roman Missal in all our parishes. We also begin a new liturgical year and the season of Advent. As has been said many times, the new words of the Mass will not make any difference to us unless we hear and speak them with new energy. The true “translation” of the Mass is its translation into action through our lives of faith. The new translation of the words is intended to enrich that primary goal.

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Four County Catholic November 2011

Welcoming the

ROMAN MISSAL On November 27, 2011 we, along with all Catholic dioceses in the United States, will begin using a new translation of the Roman Missal. This means that the words of many of the prayers of the Mass will be changing, both for you and for the priest. There will be information in your parish bulletin each week, and your parish will be holding other meetings and discussions to prepare for this new missal. You also have been reading the Liturgy Notes by Sister Elissa Rinere in this newspaper for several months, preparing us for the transition to the new Missal. This is an excellent time to continue to learn more about the celebration of the Eucharist, and to refresh and reconsider how we participate in the celebration. A sampling of the wording changes in the Order of Mass as per the new translation of the Roman Missal:

Part of Mass




Priest: The Lord be with you People: And also with you.

Priest: The Lord be with you. People: And with your spirit.

Preface Dialogue

Priest: People: Priest: People: Priest: People:

Priest: People: Priest: People: Priest: People:

Sign of Peace

Priest: The peace of the Lord be with you always. People: And also with you.

Priest: The peace of the Lord be with you always. People: And with your spirit.

Invitation to Communion


Priest: Behold the Lamb of God, behold him who takes away the sins of the world Blessed are those called to the supper of the Lamb. All: Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.


Concluding Rites

The Lord be with you. And also with you. Lift up your hearts. We lift them up to the Lord. Let us give thanks to the Lord our God. It is right to give him thanks and praise.

This is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. Happy are those who are called to his supper. Lord, I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the word and I shall be healed.

Priest: The Lord be with you. People: And also with you.

The Lord be with you. And with your spirit. Lift up your hearts. We lift them up to the Lord. Let us give thanks to the Lord our God. It is right and just.

Priest: The Lord be with you. People: And with your spirit.

Missellettes, laminated response cards and new music sheets will be available in all parish churches on Sunday, November 27 to follow the wording changes in the Liturgy of Prayer and Music. Photo by Trina Fulton


Four County Catholic November 2011

To Give is to Love “Faith” is a donor within our Diocese who has said she has “lived on a wing and a prayer” for By MaryLou Gannotti

Director of Planned Giving

most of her life. Faith, a single professional, is a faithful communicant at her parish. Several years ago, after being laid off from her job and deciding to embark upon her own business, Faith felt the call to tithe during prayer. Realizing she was, in her

words, “on an incredibly tight budget and barely making it by financially,” with just enough to make her rent, Faith wasn’t quite sure why she was being called to give at this point in her life. Despite her difficult economic circumstances, Faith kept hearing the voice urging her to share her resources. Then one Sunday during the month of October, with about $20 coming in for the week, Faith placed $2 in the basket. It was hard for her to do, realizing she could put the $2 toward a much

needed gallon of milk, but she felt she was “called by the Holy Spirit” to give. Faith had always aspired to be a philanthropist, but was concerned her limited financial resources might not allow her to realize that dream. However, her calling was strong and soon Faith, who describes herself as the “queen of budgeting,” began giving 10% of what she earned each week. At first she was able to give $2, sometimes she was able to give $20. Other times, Faith was able to give even more. She describes her tithing as “a freeing experience.” It was Faith’s feeling that despite her hardships, God would always provide. “I always

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got what I needed,” Faith says. As she nurtured her business and career, Faith continued her tithing weekly, meeting her goal of becoming as she describes, a “little

philanthropist.” Faith faithfully made her gifts, whether they be large or small, all depending on her weekly circumstances. Through hard work and careful planning, Faith was able to share some of her resources. Within a few years of setting and meeting her goals, Faith’s savvy budgeting eventually enabled her to realize yet another goal - purchasing a home. With her beloved church in mind, Faith decided she wanted to do something that would make a difference. Not too long ago, Faith had her will drafted. It was her decision to make sure most of her as-

sets went to her parish following her passing. Because she knew just what she wanted to do and was quite organized, the process of creating her will was done with relative ease. Faith notes she lives modestly out of necessity due to the economy, but truly hopes that the “small seed” she has planted will someday turn into a “mighty oak.” She has been especially inspired by Mother Teresa’s generosity during her lifetime and her teaching about giving. As the late saint said, “it is not how much we give, but how much love we put in the giving.” Faith has certainly put a lot of love into her giving, and for this we are most grateful. Please note: “Faith” is one of many generous donors within our Diocese. She has asked to remain anonymous for the purpose of this article we have honored her wishes. If you have a question regarding charitable giving through your estate, please contact Director of Planned Giving, MaryLou Gannotti, at 860-886-1928 ext. 15, or e-mail


Four County Catholic November 2011

Looking Back & Looking Ahead at St. Mary, Coventry St. Mary in Coventry has made inviting parishioners the centerpiece of its Why Catholic? effort since its very By By Larry and Cory Bock

Why Catholic? Parish Team, St. Mary’s, Coventry

beginning. More than a year ago, the first year of Why Catholic? at St. Mary in Coventry was launched with a display booth at CoventryFest in July 2010. CoventryFest is the community’s Fourth of July celebration with games, inflatables, live music, and, of course, fireworks. It was a great opportunity for our parish team to get out where the people mix and seek fun times in our community and share our faith and information about Why Catholic? Our booth highlighted an 8foot banner with the Why Catholic? logo. Sample books for each of the 4 years of faith-sharing groups were on display, along with other materials. St. Mary parishioners handed out the Why Catholic? bookmarks with the drawing of Jesus teaching and spreading the Good News and the Disciple’s Prayer. Attached to the bookmark was a “stick-on” label asking, “Looking for hope and answers? Find them in Jesus Christ and His Church.” We also used the internet to get the word out. The St. Mary parish web site has a link to Why Catholic? web pages designed just for St. Mary parish. The web site contains basic information about Why Catholic?, how to join a faith-sharing group, and a special page of testimonies of people who have appreciated their Why Catholic? experience. One couple described how Why Catholic? transformed their faith lives: “We were meeting as couples for months before Why Catholic? started. It was more of a social get-together. Now there seems to be a greater focus on sharing our personal faith, which is creating a greater hunger and thirst in our group for knowing, understanding, and appreciating our Catholic faith more than ever before ...and many of us are cradle Catholics!” Today, the web site has been updated and made ready for Year Two, “The Profession of Faith – What We Believe.” You can visit the site by first going to then clicking on the button on the home page for Why Catholic? All are

welcome to visit the web site. This year getting ready for Year Two of Why Catholic? was a bit more challenging with a very busy schedule of activities at St. Mary in September. We started with bulletin announcements and “pulpit talks” to encourage new people to attend the Small Community Leader training with Sister Veronica of RENEW International. St. Mary hosted a session on August 22, 2011. Even though it was well attended, at St. Mary, we remain with four active groups. We have continued with bulletin and verbal announcements encouraging new participants to join one of the small Christian community groups that restarted in October. The table display in the church hall held sign-up cards, the bookmarks, and other Why Catholic? materials on display. It seems

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the most effective way to spread the word about the faith-sharing groups is to spread the word by ... you guessed it, sharing. The group leaders and participants are spreading the good news about how to hear and learn about “The Good News.” The faith sharing experience is based on the wealth and riches found in Sacred Scripture and the Catechism and the books and study aids from RENEW International. It is never too late to join a small Christian community to both widen and deepen your faith through reading together, sharing, studying, and putting your faith into action with personal or group activities in between meetings. Then, when family or friends ask you “Why are you Catholic?” you will have confidence in answering. To benefit from the Why Catholic?

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Four County Catholic November 2011

Parish Restructuring Discussions Exploring Collaborative Opportunities

Approximately 200 parishioners from churches throughout the New London area atBy Shelley Wolf Four County Catholic Contributor

tended an informational meeting at St. Paul in Waterford on September 25 to begin the process of evaluating the possibility of sharing priests and ministerial services. The informational meeting marked the kickoff of what is expected to be a year-long evaluation/planning process initiated by the Diocese of Norwich and affecting the New London Deanery, a collection of 13 parishes stretching along the shoreline from East Lyme to Pawcatuck. More specifically, the evaluation affects 9,000 Roman Catholics at

the following parishes: St. Agnes and St. Matthias in East Lyme, St. Paul in Waterford, St. Joseph and St. Mary Star of the Sea in New London, Our Lady of Lourdes in Gales Ferry, Sacred Heart and St. Mary in Groton, St. Patrick in Mystic, St. Mary in Stonington, St. Thomas More in North Stonington, St. Michael in Pawcatuck, and Our Lady of Grace on Fishers Island. Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Quaker Hill is no longer part of the New London deanery; it has joined the Norwich Deanery. The Diocese of Norwich began the process of reorganizing its deaneries in 2006 in response to population shifts, priests nearing and even working past the average retirement age of 75, and a shortage of newly-ordained priests. The diocese has already completed restruc-

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turing in the Putnam, Willimantic, and Norwich Deaneries. The Vernon and Middletown Deaneries have submitted recommendations, which are currently under review. Now the New London and Old Saybrook Deaneries are beginning the process. Sister Elissa Rinere, from the office of Pastoral Planning, conducted the September 25th informational meeting, inviting parishioners to participate in the process from the outset. “The purpose of the process is to have vibrant, healthy, life-giving parishes for all and to make the best use of the resources available to us,” she said. The parishes have selected representatives to form a committee that will meet on a monthly basis at St. Matthias in East Lyme. The goal of the process is to submit recommendations in writing to Bishop Michael R. Cote by June 2012. The representatives will be asked to come up with ways to cooperate, and to imagine ways they might efficiently operate if parishes were to share a priest. “The goal is to keep parishes going with no one abandoned,” said Sister Rinere. She stressed that closure “is not the next step in the process,” but that parishes need to begin thinking in a more regional way. In the Norwich Diocese, for example, 16 priests are slated to retire in the next four years while four are expected to be ordained. The limited number of priests overall makes 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:

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At a meeting of the New London Deanery held October 19 at St. Matthias Church in East Lyme, parishes broke into group meetings. The above group includes representatives from St. Michael, Pawcatuck; St. Thomas More, N Stonington; St. Patrick, Mystic and St. Mary, Stonington. Photo by Trina Fulton it difficult for pastors to arrange for coverage when they are ill, go on vacation, or choose to go on retreat, Sister Rinere said. In addition, the New London deanery is comprised of 13 parishes that host a total of 49 Masses on Sunday for 9,000 parishioners. And these Masses are held at churches, some of which are within 20 minutes of one another. Attendance varies widely from church to church, with an average attendance of 1,500 at some churches and approximately 200 at at least one parish. Mass attendance in the New London deanery overall has decreased by an estimated 7% since 2006. “Parishes need increased evangelization,” Sister Rinere said. The Diocese of Norwich welcomes parishioner participation in the pastoral planning process, Representatives must possess three important qualities. “They must have a broad view of the Church,” Sister Rinere said, noting that there are more than 1 billion Catholics in the world and that the fastest growth rate is in Asia and Africa. Here in the United States, the Catholic population is holding steady at 65 million due to immigration, especially from South America, but the

Catholic population is shifting from the East to the South and Southwest. “We need to have a deep love of the Eucharist,” she added, emphasizing that this sacrament is not specific to any parish or priest. “And we are Christians,” she stated. “We must operate on Christian principles.” Representatives will be expected to attend all reorganization meetings, to sit down with their parish priest, to fill out a 5-page questionnaire on basic data about their church, and to meet with parishioners at large and bring their concerns back to the committee. All pastors are invited to attend the meetings. Elsewhere in the Norwich Diocese, where the process has already been completed, restructuring has resulted in some priests serving two parishes, some priests serving three parishes, and a consolidation and sharing of education services and various ministries, Sister Rinere said. So far in Eastern Connecticut, two parishes and two mission churches have closed, but all diocesan churches remain open, she stressed. The process also resulted in changes in Mass schedules and Confession times.


Four County Catholic November 2011

Diocese of Norwich & Habitat for Humanity

Building Hope Together Vicar General of the Diocese of Norwich, Father Leszek Janik, overseeing the day’s events at the historic first home sponsorship for the Diocese in cooperation with the Southeastern Connecticut Habitat for Humanity. Photo by Susannah H. Snowden

On the first Sunday in October at a cleared building site on Fairmont St. in Norwich, the Diocese of By Michael Strammiello With contributions from Marge Vanner

Peter Nystrom, Mayor of Norwich; Very Reverend Leszek T. Janik, J.C.L., Vicar General, Diocese of Norwich; Diocese of Norwich Office of Faith Events Coordinator, Marge Vanner and Monica Tijerina of the Pfizer Community Grants Program break ground on the new Habitat for Humanity House in celebration of World Habitat Day. Photo by Susannah H. Snowden

Norwich in partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Southeastern Connecticut, hosted a formal ground-breaking for a new home to be constructed by volunteers for a fortunate family to be announced at a later date. The Diocese of Norwich is the lead sponsor of the house-building project and is extremely pleased to help give a local family a chance for affordable home ownership. Father Leszek Janik, Vicar General of the Diocese, described the opportunity as “a wonderful expression of faith at work in the diocese a demonstration of living the Christian principles of helping our brothers and sisters when most in need.” One of the best outcomes of this cooperative project will be an opportunity for the Catholic youth of the Diocese to be involved in meaningful service. Habitat of Southeastern

Unfailing Prayer to St. Anthony

The Confirmation class at St. Joseph’s in Chester raised $493 for the Habitat for the Humanity House in Norwich at a recent car wash.

Holy St Anthony gentlest of Saints. Your love for God and charit for His creators made you worhy when on earh posses miraculous power which you were ready to speak for those who are in touble or anxiet. Encouraged by this thought I implore to you to obtain for me (request) The answer to my prayer may require a miracle, even so you are the saint of miracles Oh gentle and loving St. Anthony whose hear is fll of human sypathy whisper my petition into the ears of sweet infant Jesus, who loved to be folded in your ars, and the gatitde of my hear will ever be yours. This 13 day Novena has never been known to fail. Say three Hail Mar's and three Glories and promise publication.

~ JK ~

Connecticut has reserved ten building days for youth over the age of sixteen to actually work on the house. Other youth, mainly Confirmation candidates under the age of 16, can initiate fundraisers in their parish to defray the cost of materials. The confirmation class at St. Joseph Church in Chester, for example,

raised almost $500 at a recent car wash. Father Janik further stated that “it is a privilege to partner with an organization such as Habitat for Humanity who share the same principles of neighbor helping neighbor through difficult times.” This was the giving spirit shared by all at the kick-off ceremony.


Four County Catholic November 2011

Blessing All God’s Creatures, Great & Small Under blue October skies, felines and canines, ranging in size from Chihuahuas to By Shelley Wolf Four County Catholic Contributor

Great Danes, scampered into the parking lot behind St. Agnes Church in Niantic. Assembled in a semicircle around Rev. Mark D. O’Donnell, approximately 40 pet owners and their beloved pets listened attentively to a reading from the Book of Genesis to hear how God created the fish of the sea, fowl of the air, and cattle of the earth and, in the end, saw that it was good. This October 2 gathering of priest, parishioners, and pets marked the church’s fourth annual Blessing

of the Animals. Similar blessings were held at other churches throughout the Diocese of Norwich early in the month in remembrance of St. Francis of Assisi, whose feast day was celebrated on October 4. St. Francis of Assisi, who lived in the 13th century, is remembered for his special connection to, and deep love for, all of God’s creatures. It’s a love that has spanned the centuries. It’s shared by men of God and lay people alike. And it’s a love that circles back to the Divine. “The care of any of God’s creatures brings one closer to the Creator,” Rev. O’Donnell said. “Here’s another one of His creations that enables us to experience the breadth of God’s beauty and love.” Rev. O’Donnell initiated the annual Blessing of the Animals at St.

Agnes four years ago to bless the pets in his congregation, which includes St. Agnes and its nearby summer chapel, St. Francis. “I just love animals,” he said quickly and emphatically. Rev. O’Donnell has enjoyed the company of dogs all his life and is currently the owner of Kaegan, a three-year-old, hypoallergenic Kerry Blue Terrier, who lives with the pastor at the rectory. “Kaegan is the first one at the door to greet everyone,” Rev. O’Donnell said proudly. “He beats the secretary and the receptionist.” Many parishioners share the pastor’s affection for animals of all kinds. According to Rev. O’Donnell, over the years church members have brought their parrots, geckos, lizards, and even snakes to the an-

nual blessing. “I guess snakes are God’s creatures, too,” he said, after pausing for a moment to think about it. This year’s event began as a minor barkfest. Large barking dogs on leashes yanked their owners in the direction of other large barking dogs. Small dogs yipped. Rev. Anna Donnelly, age 12, holds her two new kittens, Cali O’Donnell and Dexter. Photo by Shelley Wolf circled the parking area to greet church mem- yipping. “I want her blessed. She bers and bent down to pet friendly needs blessing. She needs help!” Ducey said in mock exasperation. dogs. Anna Donnelly, age 12, carried After reading the creation story from the Bible and saying several her two gray and white kittens, Cali prayers, Rev. O’Donnell weaved his and Dexter, in a small green crate, way through parishioners and pets, which she hugged protectively to sprinkling holy water on Pugs, Shet- her chest. “She wants them to be land Sheepdogs, Persian cats, and baptized,” her father said. “I want kittens. The pets calmly stayed in them to be blessed,” the pre-teen place, receiving the blessing from said, gently correcting her father. Rose and Jeff Morrissey drove in their priest. Before the blessing, attendees from Salem with their gray and shared what drew them to the spe- black spotted Great Dane puppy, Comanche. At just 10 months old, cial service. Joan Ducey, volunteer secretary at Comanche was large enough to fill the church, held her small white and the back seat of a car. “Our niece tan Papillon, GiGi, in an attempt to told us about the Blessing of the Ancalm the dog and quiet her nonstop imals,” they said.


Four County Catholic November 2011

Diocesan Priest Receives High Papal Honor A native of New London, Connecticut, and a priest of the Diocese of Norwich having served at From the Editor’s Desk

Our lady of Lourdes Parish, Gales Ferry and St. Joseph Parish, New London, Monsignor Kevin S. Randall a diplomat of the Holy See has been promoted to the rank of Prelate of Honor of His Holiness. Monsignor Randall has a distinguished record of service to the Holy See Diplomatic Corps, the oldest existing international diplomatic service in the world. Prior to his current assignment in the Nunciature in Peru, Monsignor had on the ground experience assisting the nuncio in Rwanda and also saw service in war-torn Serbia and Montenegro.

As a U.S. Air Force Reserve Chaplain attached to the 31st Fighter Wing, Aviano Air Base, Italy, Msgr Randall collaborated with U.S. State Department officials in Slovenia to faciliate the promotion of peace and dialogue in the region. Monsignor Randall’s education achievements include a Licentiate of Sacred Theology (Master’s in the Roman System) and a Licentiate in “utruisque iuris” (Master’s in Canon and Roman Law), and Doctorate in “utruisque iuris” (Double Doctorate in Canon and Roman Law). Congratulations to a devoted parish priest, a chaplain of the Ledyard Police Force, a decorated military chaplain, and an honored diplomat of the Holy See.


Monsignor (Major) Kevin S. Randall, J.U.D. greeted by His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI on the occasion of his recent promotion within the Diplomatic Corps of the Holy See.

New Director of Development for Diocese The Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D., Bishop of Norwich, announces the appointBy Michael Strammiello

ment of Mrs. Angela Arnold as the Director of Development for the Diocese of Norwich. Mrs. Arnold has a B.A. in education with a minor in communications from the University of Rhode Island. She has an accomplished background in Marketing and Business Development. Previously a Director with CorePlus, President of American Ambulance Service Inc. and Vice President of The American Group in Norwich. Before that she was Director of Development and Marketing at St. Bernard High School in Montville for 10 years. She and her husband Michael have been married for 34 years and live in Ledyard. They have four children, all of whom live in the area. She and her husband are members of St. Mary Mother of the Redeemer

Church in Groton. Mrs. Arnold has been very involved in the community for over 34 years. She is on the Board of Directors of Catholic Charities Diocese of Norw i c h , American Ambul a n c e Service Inc, the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut, and was on the board of directors for the American Heart Association. In 2007 she received the Volunteer of the Year Award from the Eastern CT Chamber of Commerce. Angela is a member of the Montville Rotary Club and was the first woman President of the club in 1996. She has received the Paul Harris Fellow Award from Rotary Interna-

tional. Angela also served on the Board of Natchaug Hospital. She is a corporator at Lawrence and Memorial Hospital and the William W. Backus Hospital. In accepting her new appointment as Director of Development for the Diocese, Mrs. Arnold said “She is delighted to have the opportunity to bring her life-long interest in community along with her deep commitment to family and faith to the vital challenge of helping the Diocese raise awareness and resources to help so many in need find hope and spiritual comfort. It is an absolutely wonderful privilege to take on this opportunity.”

Pilgrimage for


February 5 ­ February 13, 2012 2012 LOURDES The Year of the Rosary “With Bernadette we pray the Hail Mary” Visit Paris and the Miraculous Medal Shrine, Visit the Family home of St. Therese, “The Little Flower,” the Carmel and Basilica Venerate the Incorrupt Body of St.Bernadette, Visit the Convent where she lived. Join in the Celebrations for the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes

PARIS, LISIEUX, NEVERS, LOURDES Spiritual Director Father Joseph Allen, O.P. Pastor, St. Mary’s, New Haven, Conn. Departure from NEWARK Contact:



Four County Catholic November 2011

From left to right: Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Jezierski, The Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D., Bishop of Norwich, Daniel Jezierski – Honor Scholarship recipient – and Reverend Thomas F.X. Hoar, SSE, Ph.D.

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St. Edmund’s Eighth Annual Medal of Honor Ceremonies Mystic, CT - Simple acts of service to Church and community often go unrecognized. Ordinary By Dianne Kinney

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people doing extraordinary things often go unnoticed. But members and friends of St. Edmund’s Retreat choose instead to celebrate and honor these extraordinary yet unassuming people. The St. Edmund’s Medal is presented annually to those men and women who, like St. Edmund, see their talents as God given gifts. The St. Edmund’s Eighth Medal of Honor held on October 7 honored the following distinguished recipients: Sister Georgette Lehmuth, OFS, President & CEO of the National Catholic Development Conference; Brother Sean Sammon, FMS, former Superior General of the Marist Brothers; Mayor Thomas Koch of Quincy, MA; and Mr. and Mrs. Henry J. Nardone,

Sr. of Westerly, RI. The evening began with a Mass at Our Lady of the Assumption Chapel on Enders Island celebrated by The Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D., Bishop of Norwich. In his homily, Bishop Cote said that “Each of these individuals inspires us by their lives of unselfish service to Church and community.” A reception and dinner for 205 guests followed at the Mystic Marriott in Groton. The first presentation was the annual St. Edmund’s Honor Scholarship awarded to Daniel Jezierski, a senior at St. Bernard School in Uncasville, CT by Catherine Benoit, Co-Chair of the Medal of Honor Committee and Susanne Daly, a Trustee of the St. Edmund’s Retreat. The Honor Scholarship is given to a first semester senior who exemplifies the ideals of living – at a young age - a life of virtue seeking God’s will and helping others


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through service and dedication for the Church and community. Mr. and Mrs. Henry Nardone were the first to receive Medals of Honor presented by John Casey, St. Edmund’s Trustee and President of Electric Boat. Honoree Mayor Thomas P. Koch of Quincy MA was also honored and said “I have been blessed beyond measure by our beautiful Lord and all I have done is a tribute to Jesus Christ.” Brother Sean Sammon, FMS, former superior general of the Marist Brothers accepted his Medal in the name of the entire Marist community. Sister Georgette Lehmuth, OSF, President and CEO of the National Catholic Development Conference (NCDC) received her Medal from Chad McEachern, Trustee of St. Edmund’s and a member of the NCDC Board of Directors. Sister told the guests that she always tries her best, that the honor was a true privilege in light of all the other distinguished recipients. The evening concluded with closing remarks by The Reverend Thomas F.X. Hoar, SSE, Ph.D.. Father commented that “what the recipients have done individually and collectively in an unassuming manner is simply quite extraordinary.” Benediction was conferred by The Most Reverend Daniel A. Cronin, S.T.D., Archbishop Emeritus of Hartford, CT.


Four County Catholic November 2011

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Four County Catholic November 2011

Be Hot or Cold But Never Lukewarm I was sitting in prayer one night when I began to realize what a privilege and a grace it was to have By Mary Tunison

the faith to freely engage in conversation with God. Although I choose to engage in exercises that

will hopefully deepen my spirituality, God is ultimately the one who will bring about such growth, in hidden ways and in concrete personal ways that increase my awareness of His deep, abiding presence in my daily life. Faith is a gift. Not everyone has


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it. However, I do believe God is ready and willing to bestow it upon anyone who sincerely seeks Him - the Truth. There are many Christians who sincerely walk the walk and make a profound difference in the world. Others. . .not so much. So what is it that distinguishes sanctity from mediocrity? Perhaps, for the latter, an ultimate decision has never been made – the kind of choice that would dictate change, commitment, action. As Jesus said, “By their fruits, you will know them.” With many, that fine line between comfort and commitment has never been crossed. It’s easier to stay in the “comfort zone” of somewhat believing but not thinking about it enough to make the kind of radical changes required of a true believer. If one truly believes that Jesus is Lord, all knowing, ever-loving, always in our midst – would not such an awesome reality astound

us? Would not conversation with Him come as easily as with a close friend? And, if He suddenly appeared in t h e

flesh, would He not have a captive audience, attentive to His every word? Faith in something requires commitment and commitment impels one into action -- living a life worthy of one’s calling -- challenges which some might not be willing to face. As the English writer, G.K. Chesterton once wrote, “Christianity has not been tried and found wanting, it has been found difficult and not tried.” It can be difficult to relate to that

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which is invisible. Granted. But the act of faith – plays an integral role in God’s purpose for this spiritual journey of life. Otherwise, God would have made His presence undeniably visible. Faith holds the key to a critical element of union within the soul. Faith and love are intimately connected. The greater the faith and trust in God – the greater the capacity to receive Love. The more we step out into the deep waters of faith and trust, the greater is the sign of God’s presence in a soul. As scripture says, “Perfect love casts out all fear.” Ask God to help you in the areas of faith in which you struggle. We will always have to live with some uncertainty in this life. But we are called to walk by faith, not by sight. Decide to believe or not to believe. Then live accordingly with great enthusiasm. If we spend our lives as fence sitters, never really coming to the point of that ultimate conscious choice – then we stay in a kind of safe, unknown zone that doesn’t impel us toward anything meaningful or fruitful. That is why God, so strongly opposed to lukewarmness, admonishes in Revelation 3: 15, “I know your works; I know that you are neither cold nor hot.* I wish you were either cold or hot. So, because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.” Strong words. . .but can you see His point? Without passion and purpose, we will have little effect in this world and be of less use to the Kingdom of God. Life is short – eternity is forever. Do you really want to pass into eternity having lived only a mediocre life? The life you live now will have consequences and reverberations throughout all eternity. The world today, more than ever, needs heros not couch potatoes. Make your life count. Mary Tunison works for Catholic Charities, Archdiocese of Hartford, and is a freelance writer, photographer, artist, and graphic designer. She can be contacted at


Four County Catholic November 2011

Gabriel Powell, A Living Miracle One of the joys of being Catholic is noticing all the little ways in which Our Lord takes care By Colleen Egan

Four County Catholic Contributor

of us. Often this goes unnoticed in the hustle and bustle of life, but from time to time something so spectacular happens that there can be no denying that it came from God. Gabriel Power is just such a sign. No one expected him to live after he underwent grueling surgery to correct a heart problem. But Our Blessed Lady intervened in young Gabe’s life and today he is a healthy, happy little boy. “My wife and I had been trying to have a child for 2 ½ years.” said Matt Powell (28). “(Wife) Paula (26) got pregnant with a full-term pregnancy. There was no alarm of any kind.” Gariele was born Oct. 27, 2009, at 5:44 p.m. With joy in their hearts, the Powells took their little baby and cut his umbilicul cord, never expecting what was to happen next. When the cord was cut, Gabriel turned blue. He was not breathing. He had to be transported immediately to Hartford, and then to the Children’s Hospital in Boston. Seven hours after birth, little Gabe was having open heart surgery. “It was scary. Very, very scary,” said Matt. Gabriel had what is called a total anomylus pulmonary venous return (tapvr). His cardiologist Rahul Rathod, MD, at Boston Children’s Hospital, said, “He had a very rare form of congenital heart disease with a rare treatment. When he was born, he was very,

very, very sick. All the blood from the lungs didn’t go where it was supposed to go. He was extremely sick, “Very few in this condition make it through the first night.” Rathod said. A side-effect of the brain surgery is that Gabe developed a stroke on his right side, limiting his hand movement. His oxygen saturation level, normally at 95 to 100 percent, was 20 percent. Unable to breathe on his own after surgery, Garbriel was put on a ventilator. After a few days went by, Paula and Matt were told that Gabe may never come off a respirator. That night, they returned home despondent. Saying that his wife was hysterical, Matt felt like he needed something to help soothe her. Although he had not prayed the

rosary since he was a child, and Paula had not since her early years. Blood backed up in his lungs. He was literally drowning. He was very oxygen deprived. As a result he had a stroke on the left side of his brain. “He was very, very sick.” Said Paula. Because his lungs were wet, Gabe needed to be in a medically

induced coma and was placed on a ventilator. The couple put photos of Gabriel all over their bed and meditated on the Rosary, specifically asking Mary to heal their son. “Praying made us feel at peace.” The next day they went into the hospital to get the daily update on Gabe’s condition and the doctor told them his morning x-rays showed NO fluid in his lungs. The doctor said the “fluid was simply gone.” “We knew how it happened. We knew what had occurred,” said Matt Powell. For the next 2 days Gabe was weaned off the ventilator. Matt said throughout Gabe’s stay in the hospital, there was a CD player in the crib playing soft classical music. As soon as the ventilator tube came out, he said, the Alleluhua Chorus started playing and Gabe “was breathing on his own.” Gabe needed lots of rehabilitation before he was ready to go

home. Because he had always received nutrition by IV, he had to learn how to eat, and he needed to gain some weight. He got to go home about a month later on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 25. Although Matt had done an emergency baptism on Gabe at the hospital before his open heart surgery, Gabe was formally baptized on Dec. 27 2009, surrounded by congregation and friends. Gabe is now a healthy 2—yearold. He gets checkups from a cardiologist every two years. He has limited use of his right hand due to the stroke he suffered on the left side of his brain. “If you saw him you would never think he had a heart condition,” said Matt. “He has no breathing problems except asthma, which runs in the family.” “I had never prayed the rosary before (despite being raised Catholic). After that first night, we prayed it every night. I think all the praying made the difference,” Paula Powell said.

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Four County Catholic November 2011

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showed discrepancies between the number of abortions reported by the state Department of Public Health and those reported by the Guttmacher Institute, a wellknown national organization that compiles abortion statistics in all 50 states. The Connecticut Catholic Public Affairs Conference — the advocacy office that represents the state’s Catholic bishops — says 12,456 abortions “went unreported during the four years examined.’’ As a result, the conference is asking the State Health Department to enforce a law that says that all abortions must be reported by physicians to the state health commissioner within seven days. It asks the state legislature go even further. The report says, “The General Assembly should modify state law to allow fines or license suspensions/revocations to

be used against abortion providers for failing to comply with the mandatory abortion reporting requirements.” Michael C. Culhane, the conference’s Executive Director, said that abortion providers “need to be fined, suspended or have their license revoked’’ if they fail to comply. He said he did not have an explanation for the discrepancy in the numbers. “I’m not pointing the finger at anybody,’’ Culhane said in an interview. “The only thing we’re doing is raising the question, and we’d like to get an answer.’’ Culhane has sent a letter on the issue to the state health commissioner, Dr. Jewel Mullen, but said he had not received a response yet. The health department’s spokesman, William Gerrish, said the agency was familiar with the letter and was reviewing the issue.


Four County Catholic November 2011

‘Mighty Macs’ Team & Film Overcome Obstacles IMMACULATA, Pa. (AP) — Here’s a sports fairy tale that never gets old: Underdog team with few resources By Kathy Matheson but a lot Associated Press of heart beats the odds and comes out on top. That is what actually happened to the 1971-72 women’s basketball squad at tiny Immaculata College. It’s also what happened to “The Mighty Macs,” a small-budget movie about the team’s improbable national championship that overcame its own obstacles to make it to Hollywood. The film starring Carla Gugino, Marley Shelton, David Boreanaz and Ellen Burstyn is at a theater near you and will soon be available on DVD. “We really needed to be patient and believe in the story and the right distribution platform for the story,” said Tim Chambers, who wrote and directed the film. “... It was definitely worth the wait.” The true story of the Mighty Macs has always read like a movie script. It starts in 1971 with a 23-yearold named Cathy Rush. The for-

mer high school basketball star was coaching the ragtag team at Immaculata, a struggling Catholic school for women near Philadelphia. She was barely older than her players. The Macs, who had no home court because their field house had burned down, practiced at local gyms and played all their games on the road. When they earned the 15th seed in the first-ever women’s U.S. collegiate championship tournament in 1972, players held raffles and sold toothbrushes to raise money for the trip. Immaculata upset three teams to reach the finals. There, the scrappy Macs faced off against nemesis West Chester in a nail-biting rematch — and won. Cue the confetti. In the following years, Rush was approached many times about making the Macs’ Cinderella story into a movie. But every would-be production turned into a pumpkin. So Rush was understandably wary when Chambers came to her around 2004. But she was won over by his strong backing — former Philadelphia 76ers president

Pat Croce is an executive producer — and has personal connections to the story. Chambers had grown up in the area and, as a child, saw Rush and the Mighty Macs practice at his Catholic grade school’s gym. And he was taught by the same nuns who run Immaculata — the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. “The more I was around him, the more I was convinced that if anyone could do this, he could do it,” Rush said. Filming for “Our Lady of Victory” — the movie’s original title — began in 2007 at Immaculata and, ironically, in the gym of nearby West Chester University. Chambers cast Katie Hayek, a former University of Miami shooting guard and theater major, as star player Trish Sharkey. But Hayek was diagnosed with cancer as cameras were set to roll. A wig, tenacious work ethic and rearranged shooting schedule helped mask the effects of chemotherapy, which Hayek said successfully treated her Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Then, just as the $7.5 million

production wrapped in 2008, the recession hit. Chambers couldn’t find a distributor. So he took the G-rated movie — billed as part “Sister Act,” part “Hoosiers” — on the festival circuit for family films. Good reception, but still no bites. Chambers was offered a straight-to-video deal and turned it down. He wanted a shot at the big dance. Three years after filming ended, Chambers got it. Freestyle Releasing is distributing “The Mighty Macs” on the 40th anniversary of the team’s winning season. Chambers described the movie as transcending gender and sports to tell a story about “the equality of dreams” — in this case, that young women in the 1970s were entitled to pursue their passions the same way men did.

The film takes some liberties with details; the nuns who cheered on their beloved Macs probably didn’t wear high-top Converse sneakers, as they do in the movie. And Rush didn’t have a nun for an assistant coach (Sister Sunday, played by Shelton). But the overall message is faithful to history. “It’s an enjoyable, wholesome story about something that really did happen,” said Theresa Shank Grentz, who played on the championship team and is the basis for Hayek’s character. Rush set the example for them — and many other women — to follow their dreams, said Chambers. “That’s a remarkable testament to her, and why she’s in the Hall of Fame, and why she’s a pioneer in women’s sports,” Chambers said.

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Advent Themed Retreat for Men & Women Friday, December 9 - Sunday, December 12 Preached by the IRH preaching team. A great way to prepare for the birth of Christ. Retreat includes talks, music, mass, reconciliation and great food and accommodations. $180.00 offering for the whole weekend.

Twelve Steps to Christian Growth Friday, November 4 - Sunday, November 6 This retreat based on the Twelve Steps of A.A. will focus on the Christian principles that lead to a better, happier, new person in Christ. Open to all. Cost: $180.00 On the set of the film “The Mighty Macs,” from right to left are actresses Carla Gugino as coach Cathy Rush, Marley Shelton as Sister Sunday, Taylor Steel and Meghan Sabia in West Chester, Pa. The film recounts the journey of the team Mighty Macs of tiny Immaculata College, which won the first national collegiate women’s basketball championship in 1972. Photo by Matt Rourke/AP

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Four County Catholic November 2011

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Academic Excellence. Character. Self-confidence.

St. Patrick Cathedral School, Norwich 860-889-4174 Sacred Heart School, Taftville 860-887-1757 Sacred Heart School, Groton 860-445-0611 St. Edward School, Stafford Springs 860-684-2600 St. James School, Danielson 860-774-3281 St. John School, Middletown 860-347-3202 St. John School, Old Saybrook 860-388-0849 St. Joseph School, Baltic 860-822-6141

Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D.D., Bishop of Norwich, visits with students at St. Joseph School, New London. Photo by Phil Twomey

St. Joseph School, North Grosvenordale 860-923-2090 St. Joseph School, New London 860-442-1720

A Tradition of Excellence on Squire Street The dream of St. Joseph School, on Squire Street in New London, began with the first pastor, Fr. FitzsimBy Sheila Cerjanec Technology Coordinator, Diocesan School Office

mons. Father started a building fund to which the parishioners donated twentyfive cents per week. This dream of building a parochial school for the parish children was finally realized under the pastorate of Fr. Denis O’Brien. The cornerstone was laid in May of 1937 and St. Joseph School opened its doors in Sep-

tember of that year with an enrollment of 120 students in grades kindergarten through three. Upon opening, St. Joseph School was staffed by the Sisters of Mercy with Father O’Brien as its principal. Each year, an additional grade was added until in 1943, St. Joseph School graduated its first eighth grade class. In 1962, the increased need for Catholic education in the intermediate and upper grades forced the elimination of Kindergarten through grade three, allowing for the expansions of grades four through eight to two classes each. In 1974, grades one through

three were reopened and in 1976, the Kindergarten was reestablished. While lay teachers gradually replaced the teaching Sisters and in 1984, the administration, faculty, and staff were comprised completely of laity, the charism of welcoming and hospitality of the Mercy Sisters continues to this day. Continuing to follow its tradition of excellence in academics, in 1984, the school curriculum was expanded to include computer science, French, art, music, and band. Tradition of Excellence

Continued on page 27

To learn more, contact the Diocesan School Office, 860-887-4086, or contact one of the diocesan schools.

St. Joseph School, Rockville 860-875-4943 St. Mary School, Middletown 860-347-2978 St. Mary School, New London 860-443-7758 St. Mary-St. Joseph School, Willimantic 860-423-8479 St. Michael School, Pawcatuck 860-599-1084 St. Matthew Pre-School, Tolland 860-872-0200 St. Bernard Pre-School, Rockville 860-875-0475


Four County Catholic November 2011

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Giving Thanks For ‘All Things in Good Plenty’ When Mary Chilton first spotted the New World in November 1620, the 13-year-old had been By Christina Capecchi

Four County Catholic Contributor




aboard the Mayflower for 10 weeks, stuck in the same clothes and cramped in dark, damp quarters among seasick passengers and dying goats. Each family was allotted one storage trunk for all their possessions. Imagine the terror and thrill of squinting at Cape Cod’s thickets. Mary earned the distinction of being the first European woman to set foot on Plymouth Rock. The week before Christmas, her father died. Three weeks after Christmas, the illness they called the “general sickness� had claimed her mother. Only half of the Mayflower’s 102 passengers lived

to see spring in Massachusetts. Mary marked her 14th birthday as an orphan, grasping the ways of a foreign land, where the Wampanoag Indians offered guideposts: how to grow corn, catch fish, extract maple sap and identify poisonous plants.

She was present at what we consider the first Thanksgiving, a three-day feast called for by Governor William Bradford to celebrate a successful corn harvest. The Plymouth colonists were joined by their teachers, the Wampanoag, who arrived with five deer. They cooked wild duck over an open flame, feasted on seasoned corn and gave thanks: for their harvest, for their friendship, and ultimately,

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for their survival. The general sickness had ceased. Their food was hot, their faith, intact. It was hard for him to fathom what more they could possibly want. It was, to him, “all things in good plenty.� It takes an awful lot to make 21st-century Americans decide we have “all things in good plenty.� We haven’t really got there. We’re still upgrading our vehicles, filling our basements and then paying to store the overflow. It’s hard to see much of the first Thanksgiving in our 390th, with stuffing and pie and football on big-screen TVs. But I’m trying to look back. I have such awe for the pioneers who paved the way – saints and settlers, miners and mothers. I’m praying with St. Francis de Sales, who said: “Give me one more thing, O Lord: a grateful heart.� I know that can cover and cure every matter, turning my portion into “all things in good plenty.� I’m giving thanks while hoping for a life as full and rich as Mary Chilton’s, who married and delivered 10 children. She died an old lady who had raised a family, welcomed grandkids and written a will. In it, she accounted for six white aprons, three pocket handkerchiefs, two leather chairs and a brass candlestick. Mary understood what really counted. “Knowing the uncertainty of this present life and being desirous to settle that outward estate the Lord hath lent me, I do make this make this my last will and testament,� she wrote. “First and principally, I commend my soul into the hands of Almighty God, my Creator.� Here’s to putting first things first. Christina Capecchi is a freelance writer from Inver Grove Heights, Minn. She can be reached at


Four County Catholic November 2011

Tradition of Excellence Under the leadership of Principal Marianne Cote, St. Joseph School continues to thrive with a student population of 195, and as stated in its mission statement, it remains “a holy place” where all members of the school family “discover each other in God’s love”. It is a place where children grow spiritually, academically and socially, as they interact with one another and with their teachers and principal in a safe learning environment, rooted in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The gifts and talents of all are recognized and developed in an atmosphere where respect for one another as God’s creation is inherent in the philosophy and mission. Prayer is a vital part of each school day, for it is through prayer that we nourish our relationship with God. School wide prayer for special occasions and seasons, as well as the monthly celebration of the Eucharist are planned by students and faculty at all levels. Recognizing that as the students enter a relationship with God, that relationship is established not only through prayer, worship, and study, but also by serving others. Students participate in age appropriate activities both in school and within the community such as food collections, the Rice Bowl, cards and letters to healthcare facilities and servicemen, in school “buddy”


Continued from page 25

programs, and peer tutoring. Students in the upper grades prepare meals for the local soup kitchen and along with faculty and parents serve these to the guests at the facility. Students in Grade 8 offer service at a local convalescent home weekly during personal time after school to spend time with the residents. St. Joseph School follows the curriculum set forth by the Diocese of Norwich and provides its students with the tools needed to be responsible, creative and critical thinkers. The school offers a planned program of integrated studies in the areas of religion, language arts, mathematics, science and technology, social stud-

ies, foreign language, fine arts, music, physical education and health. In addition, the school offers many interdisciplinary opportunities, such Literary publications, public speaking and writing programs, chorus, band, art exhibitions, and sports programs, including basketball for girls and boys and co-ed soccer for students in grades five through eight. Students at each classroom level also perform class plays monthly. Field trips and cultural and science assemblies also provide the opportunity to enhance the school curriculum. St. Joseph School is fully accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

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We All Have Love to G The Department of Children and Families need ilies and adoptive families for children of all ag an informational meeting where we will give d of our foster and adoptive family programs. Ho pecially needed for children over ten years old Wednesday November 9 at 7:00pm Stonington Human Services 166 S. Broad Street Pawcatuck, CT

Monday November 14 at 7:00pm Griswold Town Hall 28 Main Street Jewett City, CT

y November 22 at 7:00pm East Lyme Community Ctr. 39 Society Road East Lyme, CT

Thursday December 1 at 7:00pm Gales Ferry Library 18 Hurlbutt Road Gales Ferry, CT

Wednesday December 7 at 7:00pm Waterford Public Library 15 Rope Ferry Road Waterford, CT (Eng/Spanish)

Monday December 12 at 7:00pm Groton Public Library 53 Newtown Road Groton, CT

For more information, call 1­888­KID­HERO or visit our website: Los clases se ofrecen en espanol. Para mayor informacion sobre la fecha y el lugar llame a Guadalupe Pillars al: 860 213 0763 (Spanish Only)


Four County Catholic November 2011

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Happy 137th Birthday! On Friday October 7, 2011 the Academy of the Holy Family celebrated the 137th anniversary of the By Stephanie Rivera

Senior, Academy of the Holy Family



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opening of the school. The AHF student council organized a fun filled celebration, which included decorating the school, races in the gymnasium and good-natured academic and athletic competition among classes. The school’s birthday was celebrated with cake pops and ice cream provided by the students in the Foods Class, amidst a rousing chorus of Happy Birthday! Included in the celebration was the praying of an international rosary in our chapel, which rejoiced in the different cultures at the school. Each decade of the rosary was recited in a different

language. This year, Latin, Spanish, Swahili, Norwegian and Korean were the languages chosen for the rosary. The Academy is a Catholic college preparatory boarding and day high school for American and International young women. Students at the Academy come from many different states and countries, including South Korea, China, Vietnam, Hong Kong, Norway, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Haiti, Mexico, Spain, and Australia. With fewer than 70 students at the Academy, students receive individual attention suited to their needs. Of the seventeen faculty members, nearly half are lay teachers. The Marist Eagles participate in the Constitution State Conference for soccer, basketball, and softball. Almost all graduates continue their

education, and recent graduates received acceptances from Fordham, Iona, Assumption, St. Michael’s, Manhattan, Drexel, Boston University, Northeastern University and the University of Connecticut. The school has been run and operated by the Sisters of Charity of Our Lady, Mother of the Church since 1874, promoting the tradition of educating young women. Father John Zwiisen, a humble priest from the Netherlands, founded the Order in 1832 when he became aware of the need to educate the poor. Soon the amazing tradition that we celebrate today was born. The Academy of the Holy Family has evolved from a group of sisters helping the poor to a school that helps and teaches young women from all over the world.

On Sunday October 16th over 100 people attended the first annual Diocese of Norwich Teen Mass and Vigil for life at St. John the Evangelist Church in Montville. The Mass was con-celebrated by Father Pat Biegler, M.S.A. (St. Joseph’s Chester Parish Administrator) and Father Charles Bak, M.S.A (Priest in residence St. Joseph’s Chester) with assistance from Deacon Larry Moneypenny. The worship music was lead by Stephen LaBreck from St. Agnes. Following a brief pizza social, hosted by the Knights of Columbus, the group participated in a one hour prayer vigil at Planned Parenthood as part of the 40 Days for Life. At the prayer vigil the teens learned about five pro-life saints as they said the Rosary together. The vigil concluded with Brother Glenn Breed leading the group in Evening Prayer. This event was coordinated by the Diocese of Norwich Youth Advisory Council. Mark your calendars now for Sunday, October 14, 2012 to attend next year.


Four County Catholic November 2011

Christmas is Coming Advent Prepares the Way As Christmas draws near there’s more than gift lists to prepare. We need to prepare our hearts. One way is with an advent wreath. Each week has a theme around which you can do activities that help focus on Jesus, the reason for Christmas. Week 1-Hope • Read about the hope of Jesus coming in prophecies: Isaiah 9:7 the prophecy of the savior to come from the line of David Micah 5:2 the prophecy of Christ's birth in Bethlehem Isaiah 7:14 the prophecy of the virgin birth Hosea 11:1 the prophecy of Mary and Joseph fleeing to Egypt with Jesus Isaiah 61:1 and Isaiah 35:4-6 the prophecies that Jesus would perform miracles • Bring hope to the needy by choosing names from a giving tree or shopping to fill Toys for Tots containers • Say Merry Christmas as often as possible Week 2 Peace is what the angels proclaimed, to people of good will. First, have good will. That means to want the best for other people. • Work at not arguing and being polite to everyone, especially family members • Think of acts of love to do for one another and for neighbors and then do them. • Before speaking, consider if the words will be kind. • Peace doesn't mean avoiding problems, but reminds us to discuss differences, listen calmly and find a solution that benefits people without hurting anyone. • Practice listening skills. • Pray for world peace and peace with the people you see daily. Week 3 Joy because Christmas is so much closer and the wreath is so lit up. Joy is not the same as feeling happy. Joy is an inner gladness of heart that comes from trusting God. • Sing Christmas carols • Send Christmas cards • Talk the acronym j-o-y for Jesus-others-self. If we put Jesus first and think of others before ourselves it is much easier to have joy. • Look at how the three-lit candles glow. God's light dispels. Play flashlight tag to notice how light helps us see. • Rejoice with the candy cane shape of a shepherd’s staff. The shepherds rejoiced when they saw Jesus. Make rolls, cookies, and cake in the shape of a candy cane this week. • Hang candy cane decorations around the house as a reminder to keep rejoicing.

by Karen H Whiting

Holiday acrostic Fill in the words for the clues and discover the word in the box.

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Physical well-being Place where you live Mom, dad, sisters, brothers Pals What you gain by learning facts He saved you so you can go to heaven

November Family Stories Month so share stories and ask parents and grandparents to tell stories of their childhood. November 8-14 World Kindness Week. Do kind deeds every day. Read Colossians 3:12 and Psalm 136.

___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___

Week 4 Love, the purpose of Christ coming was to show God’s love to us. • Read John 3:16 of why God the Father sent Jesus, God the Son • Read the account of the birth of Jesus • Hold a wreath hug by having a big group hug. Call for a • Hold hands to form a human FREE Safety wreath and say a prayer for the Assessment and person on the right, going Consultation. around the circle. Then compliFully Insured ment the person on the left. • Make a special effort to show We’re Only a Phone Call Away! love to difficult people. Be Over 25 Years Experience • References Available • Call Mark Roberts 860-464-TREE (8733) thankful for each person who 860-429-TREE (8733) took time to give you a gift. 800-Arborist (272-6747)

Did You know?

November 19 National Day of Play. Hold a family play and game day. November 24 Thanksgiving so remember to thank God! November 27 First Sunday of Advent

Answer key: 1. Health 2. Home 3. Family 4. Friends 5. Knowledge 5. Jesus


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Four County Catholic November 2011

Dr. Lowney receives humanitarian award for Haiti Efforts The American Dental Association honored Dr. Jeremiah Lowney of Norwich with the 2011 Humanitarian Award Monday at its annual meeting in Las Vegas. Lowney is being recognized for his service to the needy in Haiti for the past three decades, providing health care, food, shelter and much more, the ADA said in a news release. He received a plaque and a $5,000 donation to the organization he and others founded, the Haitian Health Foundation. The organization provides health care to Jérémie in southwestern Haiti, an area of extreme poverty that previously had little or no health care. “I’m convinced that the worst poverty is hopelessness - waking up every morning lacking even the imagination to think tomorrow will ever be any better than today,” Lowney said. “The best gift you can give is hope for a better future.”

The Holy Father Announces Year of Faith Vatican – Pope Benedict XVI has announced a Year of Faith. It will begin on 11 October 2012, the fiftieth anniversary of the opening of Vatican Council II, and it will end on the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, Universal King, on 24 November 2013. The Holy Father has noted, “Moreover, the theme of the General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops that I have convoked for October 2012 is ‘The New Evangelisation for the Transmission of the Christian Faith’. This will be a good opportunity to usher the whole Church into a time of particular reflection and rediscovery of the faith. The Year of Faith is a summons to an authentic and renewed conversion to the Lord, the one Saviour of the world. In the mystery of His death and resurrection, God has revealed in its fullness the Love that saves and calls us to conversion of life through the forgiveness of sins. ‘Faith working through love’ becomes a new criterion of understanding and ac-

tion that changes the whole of man’s life. Through His love, Jesus Christ attracts to Himself the people of every generation: in every age He convokes the Church, entrusting her with the proclamation of t h e Gospel by a mand a t e that is e v e r n e w . Today too, there is a need for stronger ecclesial commitment to new evangelisation in order to rediscover the joy of believing and the enthusiasm for communicating the faith. In rediscovering His love day by day, the missionary commitment of believers attains

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force and vigour that can never fade away. Faith grows when it is lived as an experience of love received and when it is communicated as an experience of grace and joy. We want the Year of Faith to arouse in every believer the aspiration to profess t h e faith in fullness and with re n e we d conviction, with confidence and hope. It will also be a good opportunity to intensify the celebration of the faith in the liturgy, especially in the Eucharist, which is ‘the summit towards which the activity of the Church is directed; ... and also the source from which all its power flows.’ At the same time, we make it our prayer that believers’ witness of life may grow in credibility. To rediscover the content of the faith that is professed, celebrated, lived and prayed, and to reflect on the act of faith, is a task that every believer must make his own, especially in the course of this Year. Evidently, knowledge of the content of faith is essential for giving one’s own assent, that is to say for adhering fully with intellect and will to what the Church proposes. Knowledge of faith opens a door into the fullness of the saving mystery revealed by God. The giving of assent implies that, when we believe, we freely accept the whole mystery of faith, because the guarantor of its truth is God who reveals Himself and allows us to know His mystery of love. What the world is in particular need of today is the credible witness of people enlightened in mind and heart by the word of the Lord, and capable of opening the hearts and minds of many to the desire for God and for true life, life without end”.


Four County Catholic November 2011

Sisters of Charity Release Christmas Album

2011 1st Edition

Saint Peter

The Sisters of Charity of Our Lady, Mother of the Church Schola have released their latest album, Christmas Joy which features 13 Christmas choral selections. The Schola was directed by Mrs. Carroll Mailhot and produced by Michael Frishman with Gerami Production Studio. Christmas Joy can be purchased at Holy Family Motherhouse for $15.00. For further information, please call (860) 822-8241 or at the Sisters of Charity website,


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Four County Catholic November 2011

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Four County Catholic November 2011  

The Official Newspaper for the Diocese of Norwich, CT

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