Saturday, 14 March
Vigil of Sunday
by Catherine DeLorenzo

Sunday, 15 March
3rd Sunday of Lent
by Mickey Catizone

Monday, 16 March
Lenten Weekday
by Shirley Losch Recla

Wednesday, 18 March
St. Cyril of Jerusalem, bishop, doctor (OptMem)
08:00 am — NATHAN CHIPS
by Christopher J. Chapman

Thursday, 19 March
St. Joseph, husband of Mary (Sol)
08:00 am — JOHN FEENEY
by the Robert Smith family

Friday, 20 March
Lenten Weekday
08:00 am — MARY BOXER MALL (22nd anniversary)
by her daughter, Rosemary

Saturday, 21 March
Lenten Weekday
10:00 am — Deceased Members: ANCIENT ORDER OF HIBERNIANS
by the AOH

Vigil of Sunday
05:30 pm — HAZEL FAUST
by John and Alice Bernosky

Sunday, 22 March
4th Sunday of Lent
11:30 am — MICHAEL (“Tex”) and THERESA AYELLO
by their family


Saturday, 14 March
Vigil of Sunday
by her daughter, Gina

Sunday, 15 March
3rd Sunday of Lent
by M/M Peter Smolock

Tuesday, 17 March
St. Patrick, bishop (OptMem)
08:00 am — Bishop THOMAS J. WELSH
by the Connell family

Saturday, 21 March
Vigil of Sunday
by John and Barbara Petrousky

Sunday, 22 March
4th Sunday of Lent
by Alice Chiaretti

stjos/stvdp: 03.15.2009 - 01

07 / 08 MARCH
Saint Joseph Parish:

Saint Joseph Parish
: $1,858.50 from the Sunday envelopes; $83.00 from the second collection (plate); $238.00 from the Dues envelopes; $233.00 from the Rice Bowl envelopes; $139.00 from the loose. Thank you..

Saint Vincent DePaul Parish: $1,238.00 from the Sunday envelopes; $78.00 from the second collection (plate); $56.00 from the Building Maintenance envelopes; $228.00 from the Rice Bowl envelopes; $27.00 from the Easter flowers envelopes; $234.00 from the loose. Thank you.


Tuesday, 17 March
06:30 to 07:30 pm
St. Joseph Chapel

Wednesday, 18 March
02:30 to 03:30 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Thursday, 19 March
06:00 to 07:00 pm
St. Joseph Church


Tuesday, 17 March
06:00 to 08:00 pm
St. Joseph Chapel

Wednesday, 18 March
02:00 to 04:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Seek the Lord while He may be found!

two seminarians from St. Charles Borromeo Seminary to St .Joseph Parish today (Sunday. 15 March). Kevin M. Lonergan and Christopher M. Peschel will assist at the 11:30 am Mass. Kevin is studying for the Diocese of Allentown and Christopher for the Diocese of Fall River (MA). Both are in “third college”. Perhaps they can be persuaded to say a few words at the end of the Mass as to why they think that they might want to be priests.

stjos/stvdp: 03.15.2009 - 02

#1 — The 7:00 pm Mass on Thursday, 19 March, will be celebrated at St. Joseph Church rather than at St. Vincent dePaul Church, because 19 March is the Solemnity of Saint Joseph, Husband of Mary.
#2 — There will not be an 8:00 am Mass in St. Joseph Chapel on Saturday, 21 March. There will, instead, be a Mass at 10:00 am in St. Joseph Church.
PLEASE NOTE: The breakfast that was planned for next Saturday (21 March) has been cancelled, due to “overextension” on the part of the worker bees. However the post-parade social is still in full swing. It will be held from 5:00 to 9:00 pm in the St. Joseph School Hall. The Gallagher Brothers will provide the music. There will be an abundance of food and drink. However, you must BYOB. The price is $20.00 for adults and teenagers. Children (under 13) will be admitted free, but only if accompanied by an adult. Call Jack McCarthy (874-1620) for a ticket. Seating is limited, so tickets must be bought in advance.
TRINITY ACADEMY, located at the Father W. Ciszek Education Center in Shenandoah, is a regional Pre-K through Grade 8 Catholic Elementary School which currently serves the communities of Ashland, Frackville, Girardville, Gordon, Lost Creek, Ringtown, Shenandoah and surrounding areas. Trinity Academy’s caring and experienced administration, faculty, staff and parent support groups cordially invite all area families to learn more about the high quality education available to their children within a safe and friendly learning environment centered on Jesus Christ.
There will be more than $25,000.00 in scholarship opportunities available for distribution to families who meet Financial Aid Guidelines. New families are especially encouraged to contact Sr. Mary Ann Spaetti, IHM, principal, or Mike Nieddu, Director of Development, at 462-3927 to inquire about eligibility for scholarship aide.

Please read this. It is so, so, so true! If you don’t understand it, put it aside to read it some other day. After you live a few more years, you will come to understand it!
"Do you think the Prince of Lies is so unskillful in his craft, as to ask you openly and plainly to join him in his warfare against the Truth? No; he offers you baits to tempt you. He promises you civil liberty; he promises you equality; he promises you trade and wealth; he promises you a remission of taxes; he promises you reform. This is the way in which he conceals from you the kind of work to which he is putting you; he tempts you to rail against your rulers and superiors; he does so himself, and induces you to imitate him; or he promises you illumination. He offers you knowledge, science, philosophy, enlargement of mind. He scoffs at times gone by; he scoffs at every institution which reveres them. He prompts you what to say, and then listens to you, and praises you, and encourages you. He bids you mount aloft. He shows you how to become as gods. Then he laughs and jokes with you, and gets intimate with you; he takes your hand, and gets his fingers between yours, and grasps them, and then you are his."

Venerable John Henry Cardinal Newman

stjos/stvdp: 03.15.2009 - 03


Note: This is a recent email exchange between Ian R. Getzey (commonly known as “the Saturday office boy”) and Fr. Connolly. As you can tell from glancing at the emails, Ian is a man of few words, succinct and to the point --- unlike the pastor, who is a man of many words.

From: Ian Getzey [mailto:xxxxx]
Sent: Sunday, 08 March, 2009 10:29 PM
Subject: Evolution

What is the church’s position on evolution. The Internet tells me that the church is neutral on the matter.
Thanks –

Sent: Friday, 13 March, 2009 02:17 PM
To: Ian Getzey
Subject: Re: Evolution

Dear Ian:
I’m sorry to take so long to get back to you.
I wanted to give you a good answer. So, I waited until I would have time to write something worthwhile.
Unfortunately, I didn’t get around to doing it.
I hope you didn’t need an answer for school this past week!
Anyway, here is how I would answer your question.
Strangely enough, it is true that the Catholic Church is “neutral” on the subject of evolution.
That sounds crazy because evolution is almost always presented as being a controversial subject, as if a person had to decide between “believing in the Bible” and “believing in Science”.
That is a lot of nonsense.
I believe in the Bible AND I believe in Science.
However, when I say that “I believe in the Bible”, what I mean is that I believe in the Bible as the Bible is interpreted by the Catholic Church.
When I say that “I believe in Science”, what I mean is that I believe that the human mind is able to analyze facts and arrive at conclusions that are true.
An important thing to keep in mind is this: ALL TRUTH COMES FROM GOD, whether it be religious truth or scientific truth
Another thing to keep in mind is this: TRUTH CANNOT CONTRADICT TRUTH.
If a religious “truth” and a scientific “truth” contradict each other, then, logically, both of them cannot possibly be true. Either one of them is true and the other one is false or else, possibly, both of them are false.
Some religious people think that it is a “religious truth” that human beings did not evolve from lower forms of life. They think that it is a “religious truth” that the first human beings were made DIRECTLY by God, without anything intervening between the initial act of God and what I will call “the finished product”, viz. the first human beings.
Is this what I believe?
No, it is not. I believe that the bodies of the first human beings (let’s call them Adam and Eve) evolved from the bodies of creatures who were not human. So, I guess I would have to say that I believe in evolution.
Am I certain of this particular scientific belief of mine?
No, I am not 100% certain of it. It is simply the way it seems to me. From the little bit I know about science, it makes sense to me.
Am I willing to change this particular belief of mine, just in case the Church ever rules out this possibility?
Yes, of course. I have never had any doubt whatsoever that the Catholic Church is a whole lot smarter than I am! Besides, I would never hold myself up as any kind of scientific authority. I am not a scientific authority. However, I do have common sense and I do hold onto the Catholic Faith and I do believe everything that the Catholic Church teaches and I do have (at least I think I have) a very good understanding of what the Catholic Church believes and teaches.
So, am I a “bad Catholic” for thinking
that the bodies of the first human might have evolved from lower life forms?
No, I am not a “bad Catholic” for thinking this way.
Now, there are a couple of things I have to clarify here.
#1 — When I say that I believe in evolution, I am not saying that a Catholic HAS to believe in evolution in order to be a good Catholic. You can be a very good Catholic and not believe in evolution. In fact, I am personally acquainted with a few Catholics who do not believe in evolution and who are a little bit disappointed in me that I do believe in evolution. I just smile at them and suggest that they take an aspirin and a cup of tea and call me in the morning. Better yet, I tell them to read a few papal documents (like Humani Generis) and also to read the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
#2 — Now, here is an extremely important point to understand: When I say that I believe that it is possible that the first human beings got here via evolution, I am referring exclusively to their bodies! I am not referring to their souls. It is absolutely forbidden for a Catholic to believe that the SOULS of human beings are the end result of evolution. When I say “soul”, I am referring to the entire spiritual dimension of a human being --- which includes his or her power to know (intellect) and power to decide (will). So, is it possible (notice I did not say definite!) that there was a time when there were “human-like” creatures walking around on this planet that did not have human souls? Yes, it is possible. Sometimes I think (but I am not certain) that what scientists call “homo neanderthalis” was a creature that had human appearance, but was not human. It is our SOULS that make us truly human. Each human soul is the direct creation of God and is infused into the body directly by God. Pope Pius XII (he was the Pope of my childhood and teenage years) made it clear that IT IS NOT FORBIDDEN for Catholics to investigate the POSSIBILITY that the human body came from “pre-existent and living matter”. Notice that the Pope did not say that the Church believes that the human body evolved from some lower form of life. He simply said that the Church does not reject the theory that the human body evolved from some lower form of life. Some persons, unfortunately, have minds that insist on black and white answers. They insist on one of two answers: “Yes, the Catholic Church believes in evolution!” or else “No, the Catholic Church does not believe in evolution!” The correct answer is neither of the above. The correct answer is: “The Catholic Church leaves her mind open to the possibility of evolution.” It is my personal opinion that the evidence for evolution is becoming more and more convincing. However, that is the opinion of a non-scientist. As I already said, I do not have any competence as a scientist. My only competence is that of a priest who is faithful to the Church.
I’m going to make one more point and then I’ll be finished. I owe my knowledge of this particular point to Michael J Behe, Ph.D., a professor of Biochemistry at Lehigh University. I have met Dr. Behe on more than one occasion, have attended a couple of his lectures and have even read one of his books (not easy reading!). He is a devout Catholic and a well-respected scientist. At one of his lectures Dr. Behe made a point that I scribbled down on a piece of paper, so that I would not forget it. He said that RANDOM SELECTION is an essential component of Darwinism, but that he (Dr. Behe) does not hold to random selection. He says that the internal structures of cells in the human body give evidence of DESIGN and PURPOSE, not random (haphazard) selection. When I heard Dr. Behe say this, a light bulb went off in my head. He was drawing a distinction between Evolution and Darwinism. A Darwinist apparently rules out the possibility that evolution has taken place according to some pre-conceived pattern or plan. A person who is not a Darwinist is able to believe that evolution has taken place according to some pre-conceived pattern or plan. In other words, there is a Mind that preceded evolution. Needless to say, when one speaks about “a Mind” that is above and beyond evolution, one is getting dangerously close to referring to God!
My final point: Never let anyone tell you that you have to choose between believing in Creation and believing in Evolution. That is just plain silly. I believe in both. I believe absolutely that God created everything out of nothing and I am fairly certain that, in His creation of living matter (a lot of it, if not all of it), he utilized a process we call “evolution”.
I have more to say on the subject, but I think I’ll stop here.
Oh, wait! One more thing!
One of the great advantages of being a Catholic is that we have a dependable teaching authority. It is called “the magisterium of the Church”. Unfortunately, Protestants cut themselves off from it by rebelling against the Church. All they have left is the Bible (not even the complete Bible) plus a hundred zillion different pastors, each interpreting it in his or her own way. By and large, it is because of the tragedy of Protestantism that we have the apparent controversy today between religion and science.


stjos/stvdp: 03.15.2009 - 04/ /05

OMISSIONS IN LAST WEEKEND’S BULLETIN: In the article about the death of Gloria Chiaretti, we inadvertently omitted the names of two of her grandchildren. We apologize for this. Please note that Gloria has thirteen grandchildren, not eleven. The names that were omitted are as follows: Luke John Chiaretti and Eric Kulengosky. Eric is deceased.

HAVE YOU EVER BEEN TO AN INTERMENT SERVICE in a cemetery and, after the priest (or deacon or other officiant) was finished with the prayers, the funeral director announces that there will be a “dove release”?
Well, I have: once was while I was pastor in Pottsville and the other time, since I have been pastor in Girardville.
Let me tell you, although I didn’t betray my thoughts or feelings either time, I was not happy at the fact that I was obliged to stand there while the dove-master (or dove-mistress) took one of the birds to each of the mourners with the implicit suggestion that he or she touch the bird’s head. I guess this was a symbol of farewell to the deceased!
I remember feeling my guts twist inside as the dove-mistress at the Pottsville ceremony told the bystanders that the three doves represented (I kid you not) “the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit”.
At that moment, I begged the Triune Majesty to overlook the sacrilegious words and to please refrain from striking us all down dead on the spot!
So, please allow me to make the following declaration:
If you plan to release any doves at a funeral service in which I am a participant, please give me plenty of advance notice, and please delay any dove release until I have left the area.
If I know ahead of time that I shall be obliged to be an unwilling participant in a dove-release, I might decide to take Kateri along with me. She has a particular interest in birds and is not impressed by any social-climbing pigeon who claims to be a dove.
If anyone wants to know why I object to dove-releases in cemeteries, I can sum it up with one short sentence: It is profoundly silly and undignified.
I realize that someone will point out to me that Noah sent out a dove from the Ark and that the Holy Spirit descended “like a dove” on Jesus as He was coming out of the Jordan River.
To which I say: Non sequitur! (It does not follow!)
It does not follow that these two Scriptural references to doves form any kind of a rational foundation for releasing doves at a graveside burial.
If someone were to ask me just what it is that I object to in the releasing of doves at a gravesite after the prayers have been said, I would try to summarize it in these words: I am wary of sentimentality that is not firmly based on Scripture and Sacred Tradition and I object to any attempts to “improve” on the Catholic funeral rite by the addition of any extraneous elements — especially extraneous elements with wings, feathers and beaks.

The thought has occurred to me that it would be very interesting — and slightly dangerous — to stage a dove-release in the vicinity of Hegins.

stjos/stvdp: 03.15.2009 - 06


SOOTHSAYER:      Caesar!
CAESAR:                Ha! who calls?
CASCA:                  Bid every noise be still: peace yet again!
CAESAR:                Who is it in the press that calls on me? I hear a tongue, shriller than all the music, cry                               'Caesar!' Speak! Caesar is turn'd to hear.
Beware the Ides of March.
CAESAR:                What man is that?
BRUTUS:               A soothsayer bids you beware the Ides of March.
CAESAR:                Set him before me; let me see his face.
CASSIUS:               Fellow, come from the throng; look upon Caesar.
CAESAR:                What say'st thou to me now? Speak once again.
SOOTHSAYER:      Beware the Ides of March.
CAESAR:                He is a dreamer; let us leave him: pass.

Excerpt from Act I, Scene 2 of Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare

TODAY — 15 MARCH AD 2009 — is the 2,053rd anniversary of the death by assassination of Julius Caesar. The “Ides” of March is the 15th day of March, according to the Roman way of identifying dates. Caesar was stabbed to death on the floor of the Senate by a group of conspirators. He had been warned by a soothsayer to beware the 15th day of March. He was subsequently warned by his wife, Calpurnia, that he ought not go to the floor of the Senate that day. However, he thought himself above and beyond all threats and warnings about threats. Ignoring the soothsayer (the word “sooth” means “truth”) and his wife, he went to the Senate floor on 15 March 44 BC. He never went back home. World history was changed.

I take this opportunity — viz. the fact that today is the Ides of March — to remind everyone that the Catholic Church is the great and dependable soothsayer in the world today. Like the soothsayer in the play, she is marginalized and is perceived as being

peculiar and strange;
weird and out of the mainstream;
a trifle wifty and stuck in old ways of thinking;
ridiculous and arrogant;
etc., etc., etc.

Nevertheless, she persists in speaking sooth to the world. It is the wise person who listens to Holy Mother Church. Those who refuse to listen to her and persist in their refusing even up to the end will be cast into the fires of hell for all eternity — a dismal prospect, to say the least. Allow me to specify just a very few of the highly unpopular “sooths” that Mother Church says:

It is a mortal sin to have sexual relations outside of marriage.
It is a mortal sin to use artificial contraception.
It is a mortal sin to masturbate.
It is a mortal sin to look at sexually arousing material (pornography).
It is a mortal sin deliberately to miss Mass on Sunday.
(In all cases, “mortal sin” presupposes sufficient knowledge and full consent of the will.)

stjos/stvdp: 03.15.2009 - 07

 Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament
Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament

7:00 pm

Friday, 20 March:         St.Vincent dePaul Church Sunday, 15/22 March:
St. Joseph Church
THE RANGERS HOSE COMPANY will be hosting a Longaberger Basket Bingo at the Rangers Hose Company on Sunday, 19 April 2009. The doors open at 12:00 noon. You can join us for lunch. Bingo begins at 2:00 pm. The price of admission is $20.00 (if purchased in advance) or $25.00 at the door. A second packet is $5.00. Children playing bingo must be accompanied by a paying adult. Children may play with the purchase of a second packet. There will be twenty regular bingo games, seven specials, three jackpots and raffles. Many of the baskets are filled. There will be plenty of food and fun for all! Come and support the Rangers Hose Company. Contact 276-6922 or 276-6650 for tickets. Thank you!

DO YOU REMEMBER THE WEEKEND WHEN WE HAD SOME VISITORS FROM THE MISSIONARIES OF THE POOR? They were the folks who provided the memorable vibrant music at all of our weekend Masses. If you recall, their work is centered in Jamaica, where they minister to some of the poorest of the poor in the western hemisphere.
There is a woman (Mary Rose Rollins) who is going to visit the missionaries in Jamaica from 4 to 11 April. She wants to bring to them items that they need. In a recent email, these are the items they specify that they need:

felt-tip markers; ballpoint pens; 8 ½ x 11 bond paper; notebooks; labels; protector sheets; blank CD's and DVD's; HP deskjet 5650 printer; print cartridges #56 (black) and #57 (color); a trimming (cutting) board; a USB MP3 player; #22 fastness (Acco) 2 ¾ inch centers and 2 inch capacity; 9 volt batteries; AAA batteries; Sony Hi-MD portable recorder.

In addition, money (needless to say) is always welcome!
If anyone in our two parishes wants to donate any of the items specified or want to make a donation (cash or check), please let Fr. Connolly know. He guarantees you that whatever you give will go to the Missionaries of the Poor.

stjos/stvdp: 03.15.2009 - 08


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