03 / 04 NOVEMBER
Saint Joseph Parish
Saint Francis deSales Parish
Tuesday, 13 November
6:00 to 7:00 p.m.
at St. Joseph's
6:00 to 7:00 p.m.
at St. Joseph's
3:30 to 4:30 p.m.
at St. Francis deSales'
THE SANCTUARY LAMP at St. Joseph Church is offered, during
the week of 11 - 17 November, in loving memory of A. Glendon
Acker, at the request of his wife, Liz, and family.
Angelo J. Barone
Vito J. Galle
Anna Savini Tucci
Robert J. Yanni Jr.
Rosemarie Fabiani Zeller
R. Michael Whitney
Jennifer Julian Cooper
Brittany R. Cory
Margaret R. DiMarcello
John F. Folino
Alexia M. Kline
Nicole C. Lukach
Vera Monti Miller
Gina L. Ferraro
Judith D'Alessandro Strokelitus
Pamela Villella Bensinger
Debra Evangelista Boncore
Blake R. Bowers
Evan J. Getzey
Michael J. Nowak
Susanne Weiss Visalli
Michael A. Pilo
Victoria R. Chewey
In memory of
Joanne Elizabeth Palko Bach
Bill and Tina Rutecky
Julian and Nora Chiplonia
MARIA JOSEPHINE MESSINA,
a member of St. Joseph Parish, died on Tuesday, 6 November, in Rest Haven. Born on 15 January 1950, Maria was 57 years old.
Maria was baptized in St. Joseph Church by Fr. Cruise on 5 February 1950.
She is the only child of Joseph C. and Albertina (Almeida) Messina, both of whom are now deceased.
It is probably safe to say that, of all the members of St. Joseph Parish, Maria was the least in terms of worldly importance or social prestige, the least in terms of power or influence or intellectual attainments.
It is possible, although God alone judges such matters, that Maria was the greatest person in St. Joseph Parish in the area of holiness.
From birth, Maria was profoundly retarded and totally dependent. Her mother, Albertina, told me once that Maria was microcephalic and that her survival beyond early childhood had not at first been anticipated.
Albertina kept Maria at home and waited on her hand and foot for many years. The love was palpable. In recent years, the staff at Rest Haven took up where Albertina left off. They did very well by her. May God reward them for their deeds of kindness.
We are able to say, in Maria's case, what Catholic humility about the human condition impedes us from saying in almost all other cases: We are certain that Maria Messina is now enjoying the Beatific Vision. In Heaven, where the blind see, the deaf hear, the mute speak and cripples dance, Maria, once bereft of cognitive power, is regarded as a sage and is happy beyond measure.
A Memorial Mass for Maria will be celebrated in St. Joseph Church at the convenience of family members.
ROBERT A. EVANS Jr., a funeral director whose establishment is located
on Pike Street in Port Carbon, was a candidate for School Board
in the recent election (6 Nov).
Bobby did not win. As a matter of fact, he lost.
Okay, so he lost! So, big deal! So, somebody has to lose! It's no disgrace to lose! Who knows? Maybe next time? After all, Abe Lincoln lost the first time he ran for public office. So did Harry Truman! So did a lot of great men!
In fact, Bobby lost by only two votes!
For a first-time candidate for public office, losing by only two votes is actually pretty good.
It's a consolation of sorts, is it not?
Well, depends on how you look at it.
All he needed was two more votes and - I guess - there would have been a run-off or a coin toss or something.
But here is a small detail, attested to by the candidate himself: Neither Mrs. Evans (Bobby's mother) nor Mrs. Evans (Bobby's wife) voted.
We don't know why and we don't dare ask.
So, we are left with this realization: If only they had voted, it is quite possible that Bobby would have lost by four votes!
THANKSGIVING BAKE SALE &
St. Patrick Church, Pottsville, will be holding a sale in its Parish Center, 313 Mahantongo Street, on Saturday, 17 November, from 12:00 noon to 6:00 p.m. and on Sunday, 18 November, from 8:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Items on sale will include: homemade baked goods; city chicken; halushki. In addition, there will be a variety of soups, including chicken noodle, vegetable, bean and potato. Craft items will also be available. Stop in!
To place an order for city chicken, call 622-1802 between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. any day up to 15 November.
UNLESS YOU HAVE BEEN LIVING IN
A CAVE FOR THE PAST COUPLE OF YEARS, you
are aware that there have been conversations going on in the
Diocese of Allentown about the possibility - nay, even the advisability
and feasibility - of a re-alignment of parishes.
No definitive decisions have been made as yet. Meetings are going on and suggestions are being made. We shall see how it will all come out. We have no doubt that Bishop Cullen will make well-informed decisions, based on the advice and input he receives. Nothing will be done in a thoughtless or peremptory manner.
Needless to say, hypothetical questions arise. People are anxious for answers even before final decisions are made.
One hypothetical question that I have heard raised more than once is this: If a parish owns a cemetery and if it is decided that that parish should be merged or consolidated with some other parish (thereby losing its identity as a distinct parish), what would happen to that parish's cemetery?
The answer to that question is very simple: Nothing will happen to that parish's cemetery! Nothing at all! What could possibly happen to it? A cemetery is a cemetery is a cemetery. The only change would be administrative. The cemetery, together with all of its assets and liabilities, would become the responsibility of the parish into which the former parish had been merged or consolidated.
Because inquiring minds want to understand, let me give a purely hypothetical example.
Let us take St. Patrick Parish, Pottsville, for
example. St. Patrick's owns and operates three cemeteries, the
best known of which is Our Lady of Calvary Cemetery. St. Francis
deSales Parish, Mount Carbon, does not own or operate any cemetery.
Now let us suppose - this is purely for sake of illustration - that St. Patrick Parish were to be consolidated with St. Francis deSales Parish and were to cease to exist as a distinct entity.
In such a case - this is hypothetical and for illustration only, mind you - St. Francis deSales Parish would then own and operate the cemeteries formerly operated by St. Patrick Parish.
Would these cemeteries have to be re-named to reflect the new situation? Certainly not! Should they be re-named? I think not. What would be the point? Stare decisis!
Would the persons whose remains are interred in the cemetery be obliged to transfer their membership from St. Patrick Parish to St. Francis deSales Parish? Well, I am not a canon lawyer and cannot give a definitive answer to this question. However, it is my understanding that membership in a particular parish ceases upon death. So, it would be an exercise in futility to insist that the deceased transfer their membership. Speaking only for myself and given the above scenario, if I were to remain as pastor of St. Francis deSales Parish - an hypothesis by no means certain - I would not require that deceased members of St. Patrick Parish transfer their membership to St. Francis deSales Parish. This would not be respectful. I operate on the principle that there is no advantage whatsoever to be derived from antagonizing the faithful departed - nor, come to think of it, the faithful undeparted.
PLEASE PRAY FOR a woman who died on Monday, 5 November,
in Hospice Atlanta (GA).
Born on 27 November 1942, JOANNE ELIZABETH PALKO BACH was 64 years old. She was a member of St. George Parish, Newnan (GA). In her early years, she had been a member of St. Joseph Parish.
Joanne was baptized in St. Joseph Church by Fr. Perlo on 18 December 1942. It was here, on 24 April 1949, that she received her First Holy Communion - also from Fr. Perlo. Five days later, also in St. Joseph Church, she received the sacrament of Confirmation from Bishop McCormick. On 19 May 1990, in St. Patrick Church, Pottsville, in the presence of Fr. Clement, Joanne was married to Steven Allan Bach.
Joanne is the daughter of Joseph A. Palko (deceased) and Carmella (Evolo) Palko.
The Mass of Christian Burial for Joanne was celebrated in St. Joseph Church on Saturday, 10 November. The interment took place in the parish cemetery.
Eternal rest grant unto Joanne, O Lord, and let the perpetual light shine upon her. May her soul and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.
|THE PROFIT from last Sunday's Spaghetti Supper (4 Nov) came to $1,156.65. I run out of words to express the gratitude we feel towards our wonderful Spaghetti Crew! God bless you, one and all!|
Lord, teach me to be generous,
to serve You the way You deserve to be served:
to give and not to count the cost;
to fight and not to heed the wounds;
to toil and not to ask for rest;
to labor and not to ask for any reward,
save that of knowing that I am doing Your will!
St. Ignatius of Loyola
|I recited this prayer in a homily recently. I mentioned that I had first learned it from Father Thomas G. Smith, a priest of the Archdiocese of Newark, who was the Spiritual Director of Mount Saint Mary Seminary, Emmitsburg (MD) during my time as a seminarian. I mentioned that Fr. Smith was one of the holiest men I have ever known and that, if he prayed and recommended this prayer, it sure wouldn't do any of us any harm to learn it|
LUNG CANCER AWARENESS
Not an attractive topic, but certainly an important one and, maybe, a relevant one - and it could be relevant to you or to someone in your family. Check it out!
Date: Wednesday, 14 November
Time: 6:00 p.m.
Place: Pottsville Hospital, Medical Conference Rooms A & B, Main Hospital
Presenter: David Moylan, MD, oncologist
SHARING THE MAIL
It occurred to me that the following email interchange might be of sufficient interest to include in the bulletin. Chelsea is a student at Messiah College, Grantham PA. I taught a class there on Monday, 5 November.
Hi Father Connolly,
My name is Chelsea and I am a student of Mr. Gontis's. It was really a pleasure having you speak in our class on Monday and I learned a lot. I had one question from the packet that we weren't able to get to, because of time. What is the Catholic opinion of ghosts (as in dead people becoming ghosts, hauntings, etc.) and the findings of shows involved in searching and communicating with those ghosts? Ones like the ones on this site that use thermal cameras and other tools http://www.scifi.com/ghosthunters/ ? I know it's on the scienceFICTION channel, but my friends are very into the show and to tell you the truth, when I watch it, it does seem very believable.
Thank you for your kind comment.
I enjoyed my visit to Messiah.
I found the students quite receptive and eager to learn.
To give you a very brief reply to your question about ghosts, I would simply say:
#1 - Yes, I do believe in the existence of ghosts.
#2 - However, I am inclined not to believe most of the stories I have heard that have to do with ghostly apparitions. On the other hand, I am inclined to believe some of them.
Let me give you a few brief thoughts in regard to "ghosts".
First of all, as a Catholic, I do believe in the existence of spirits.
Come to think of it, I could not be a Catholic UNLESS I believed in the existence of spirits.
What is a spirit?
A spirit is a non-material entity.
There are three kinds of spirits:
God and angels - both unfallen angels and fallen angels (devils) - are pure spirits. Pure spirits have no necessary relationship whatsoever to Matter. As the old joke puts it: An angel needs a body as much as a snake needs a bicycle!
Each human soul is a mixed spirit. Each human soul depends on Matter (i.e. a human body) for its functioning, but not for its existence. So, when a human being dies, his or her soul continues to exist but is unable to function as it should because it has lost its material counterpart. An example I sometimes use to illustrate this (although it is an imperfect analogy) is this: If your TV receiver, which is connected to a cable signal, falls on the floor and is broken, the TV signals continue to flow in via the cable. However, they cannot be translated into light and sound because the TV is broken. --- By analogy, the human soul is naturally immortal. It continues to exist even after its material instrumentality "gets broken" or ceases to exist.
Each animal, from the highest primate to the lowest paramecium, has an animating principle, which can be called a soul. This "animal spirit" or "animal soul" depends on matter (the body of the animal) not only for its function but also for its existence. When an animal dies, its soul dies with it. Animal soul is not immortal. It surprises some people when we tell them that their dog or cat has a soul. However, this is a true statement. On the other hand, we do not say that the soul of a dog or of a cat survives the death of the body of the animal. When a cat or a dog dies, that is the end of its existence as the distinct individual creature that it was. Obviously, God can do whatever He wants. If He wanted to do so, He could re-create a particular animal. Therefore, we do not have to be absolutists when we are asked if it is possible that somebody's pet dog or cat or hamster will greet him in the next life. The best answer is probably this: "If you need to get your dog (or whatever) back in order for you to be happy, God will see to it that you get it back!"
What do we mean by a "ghost"?
Generally speaking, the word "ghost" refers to the soul of a deceased human being. A very important point to be made in regard to apparitions of ghosts is this: No such apparition can occur without the knowledge of God and the consent of
God. God is absolutely in charge of all departed
human souls. It is not to be expected that He will permit departed
human souls (i.e. human beings) to interact with living human
beings, at least not on the level of sense. (By "sense",
I am referring to the five senses.)
Notice I said, "it is not to be expected". However, we cannot tell God what He may or may not do. God can do anything that is not intrinsically impossible. Therefore, He can, if He wishes to do so, allow some interaction.
However, I cannot imagine that God would allow such interaction for the sake of entertainment or for the satisfaction of vain curiosity. For this reason, the Church has always forbidden such things as séances or "spirit rappings" or ouija boards or other means whereby people try to establish contact with the dead.
Another thing to remember is this: All departed human souls are either (a) in Heaven or (b) enroute to Heaven (i.e. in Purgatory) or (c) in Hell.
Regardless of where they are, they are under God's control. No departed human soul can be where God does not want him to be, nor act in a way that God does not want him to act. This is important to remember. Everything is under God's control. Therefore, we need never be apprehensive or fearful about the possibility (admittedly remote) that a departed soul will interact with us.
Souls of persons who are in Hell are highly unlikely to interact with persons who are still in the flesh. If they were to do so, it would be by God's command and only as a warning to someone who is going down the wrong path.
Souls of persons who are in Heaven are somewhat more likely to interact with persons who are still in the flesh. There are various credible accounts of saints appearing to people.
Souls of persons who are in Purgatory are - and here I give my opinion - the most likely (or, better yet, least unlikely) to interact with persons who are still in the flesh. The reason for this is twofold: (a) they are in need of prayer and (b) there might be some aspect of their purification - perhaps some need for forgiveness - that requires a communication with someone still in the flesh.
In all such matters, it is best to exercise a certain restraint. For all practical purposes, it is best to be slow to believe reports about ghostly visitations. Keep in mind that many people prey on the credulity of the public. On the other hand, there is no need for us to deny possibilities. "There are more things in heaven and on earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy!"
With kindest regards -
Fr. Edward B. Connolly
SAINT FRANCIS deSALES CHURCH
Vigil of Sunday
6:00 p.m. - FRANCIS A. KALYAN
by Joseph T. Cescon and family
32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time
9:15 a.m. -DECEASED: NICASTRO FAMILY
by Julian and Nora Chiplonia and sons
12:15 p.m. - MIKE DUNBROWNEY
by his daughter, Nancy Dunbrowney Haag
St. Josaphat, bishop, martyr (OblMem)
10:00 a.m. - CATHERINE PHILLIPS McGOVERN
re-scheduled from 24 Oct
10:00 a.m. - LaVERNE HUBER MORRIS
by Joseph T. Cescon
St. Margaret of Scotland; St. Gertrude, virgin (OptMems)
10:00 a.m. - WALTER McKEOWN
by Dolores Joulwan Mazzuca
Vigil of Sunday
6:00 p.m. - ELIZABETH YACOBACCI
by Victoria LaPlaca Hoffecker
33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
9:15 a.m. -DECEASED: CHIPLONIA FAMILY
by Julian and Nora Chiplonia and sons
12:15 p.m. - FRED YUENGLING Sr.
by Nancy Dunbrowney Haag