Saturday, 16 April
Vigil of Palm Sunday
by the Rizzardi family

Sunday, 17 April
Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion
by his daughter, Mickey

Monday, 18 April
Monday of Holy Week
by the Walsh Trust

Tuesday, 19 April
Tuesday of Holy Week
07:00 pm — FRANCIS P. MORRIS
by his sister, Jean

Wednesday, 20 April
Wednesday of Holy Week (Spy Wednesday)

Thursday, 21 April
Holy Thursday
by the Getzey family

Friday, 22 April
Good Friday of the Lord’s Passion
NO MASS (see page 08)

Saturday, 23 April
Vigil of Easter
08:00 pm — JULIA CLARKE
by the Clarke Trust

Sunday, 24 April
Easter Sunday: Resurrection of the Lord
10:00 am — JOHN FALCONE
by OPM
by Eileen Rowland


Saturday, 16 April
Vigil of Palm Sunday
04:00 pm — ANDREW and MARY POWLICK
by John and Barbara Petrousky

Sunday, 17 April
Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion
08:30 am — GARY J. ROMANOT
by his parents

Monday, 18 April
Monday of Holy Week
07:00 pm — God’s Blessings on BARBARA (surgery)
by Carol Perry Scheihing

Tuesday, 19 April
Tuesday of Holy Week
by Henry and Eileen Wayne

Wednesday, 20 April
Wednesday of Holy Week (Spy Wednesday)
07:00 pm — GARY J. ROMANOT (1st anniversary)
by his parents

Thursday, 21 April
Holy Thursday
07:30 pm — JOSEPH V. KRICK
by his wife, Carole

Friday, 22 April
ood Friday of the Lord’s Passion
NO MASS (see page 08)

Saturday, 23 April
Vigil of Easter
10:30 pm — TED and PATRICK YACKERA
by the Yackera family

Sunday, 24 April
Easter Sunday: Resurrection of the Lord
08:30 am — God’s Blessings on SISTER MARY RAYMOND OP
by her sister, Carolyn

stjos/stvdp: 04.17.2011 - 01

09 / 10 APRIL

Saint Joseph Parish
Receipts for parish purposes: Receipts for parish purposes: $1,087.00 from the Sunday envelopes; $81.00 from the second collection (plate); $75.00 from the Dues envelopes; $198.00 from the Building Maintenance envelopes; $50.00 from the Easter flowers envelopes; $25.00 from the Fuel envelopes; $104.00 from the loose.
Total: $1,620.00
Receipts for non-parish purposes: $217.00 from the Rice Bowl envelopes; $5.00 for Japanese earthquake / tsunami relief
Analysis: When one deducts from the total of the receipts for parish purposes ($1,620.00) our weekly financial obligation to the Diocese, i.e. assessments ($329.54), plus our weekly premium for property and casualty insurance ($464.00), plus our weekly subsidy to Trinity Academy ($358.17), the sum total of which is $1,151.17, one sees that $468.83 is available from this collection for operating the parish.

Saint Vincent DePaul Parish:
Receipts for parish purposes: : $817.00 from the Sunday envelopes; $40.00 from the second collection (plate); $63.00 from the Dues envelopes; $238.00 from the Building Maintenance envelopes; $25.00 from the Easter flowers envelopes; $105.00 from the loose.
Total: $1,288.00.
Receipts for non-parish purposes: $27.00 from the Rice Bowl envelopes
Analysis: When one deducts from the total of the receipts for parish purposes ($1,288.00) our weekly financial obligation to the Diocese, i.e. assessments ($229.38), plus our weekly premium for property and casualty insurance ($282.46), plus our weekly subsidy to Trinity Academy ($250.98), the sum total of which is $762.82, one sees that $525.18 is available from this collection for operating the parish.


Sunday, 17 April
06:00 to 07:00 pm
St. Joseph Church

Monday, 18 April
12:00 noon to 01:00 pm
St. Joseph Chapel

Tuesday, 19 April
09:00 to 10:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Wednesday, 20 April
06:00 to 07:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Thursday, 21 April
04:00 to 05:00 pm
St. Joseph Church

Friday, 22 April
01:00 to 02:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

06:00 to 07:00 pm
St. Joseph Church

Saturday, 23 April
01:00 to 03:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Keep in mind that Confession is available outside the scheduled times to anyone who asks. If you want to go to Confession, simply tap the priest on the shoulder or (preferably) call the pastor and agree with him on a time. Fr. Connolly does not consider such requests to be “an imposition” on his time. He is happy to make the sacrament available.

NOVENA IN PREPARATION FOR FEAST OF DIVINE MERCY begins on Good Friday. Please note the schedule for the first three days of the Novena: Good Friday at 12:00 noon; Holy Saturday at 12:00 noon; Easter Sunday at 03:00 pm ---- All in St. Vincent dePaul Church.

stjos/stvdp: 04.17.2011 - 02


f the Reverend Harold Egbert Camping is correct, you might want to cancel any plans you have for these dates.
Well, because Pastor Camping says that the RAPTURE will occur on 21 May and ARMAGEDDON and THE END OF THE WORLD on 21 October.
You can check it out on
If I understand him correctly, all those who REALLY belong to Jesus will be taken up to heaven on 21 May 2011, leaving everyone else behind. The following five months will be “put up or shut up” time. It will be “last chance” time. It will conclude with Armageddon on 21 October, after which all the people who belong to Jesus will go to Heaven and all those who don’t will be annihilated. The photo on this page shows one of the Reverend Camping’s colorful evangelical vans.
The Reverend Camping is a man of venerable age. He is 89 and, if his predictions are correct, will not be here to celebrate his 90th birthday (21 July 2011), because he will (I presume) have been raptured prior to that date, but will (I presume again) return with the Lord on 21 October for Armageddon.
The Reverend Camping is what I would call “The Perfect Protestant”. I call him that because he has taken Protestantism to its logical conclusion. Rejecting all merely human authority and churches and traditions and adhering strictly to the principle of private interpretation of the Bible, he has come to his conclusions, run them up the flagpole, found a fair number of persons to salute and off he goes.
I feel somewhat honored that the Rapture will occur on 21 May 2011. That happens to be the 45th anniversary of my ordination to the priesthood. I don’t know if my anniversary had any part to play in influencing the Lord to schedule the Rapture for that day. I’m not sure if it will be morning, afternoon or evening.
Pardon me for jesting about such weighty matters. It’s just that I have always thought that Protestantism is such a disaster. I can’t see any point in being a Christian unless you’re going to be a Catholic. Outside the Catholic Church, it just gets sillier and sillier. If the Lord had wanted us to run around like a bunch of idiots, He would have simply tossed us a Bible as He ascended into Heaven and said, “Okay, guys! Here’s the Book! Study it. Try to figure out what it means. I’ll see you when I see you!”
But the Lord didn’t do that!
He didn’t write any book. Instead He established a Church, complete with Bishops, including one whom He designated Head Bishop. As time went by, the Church assembled some BC writings and produced some AD writings of its own, canonized the lot of them (73 to be exact) and called them “THE BIBLE”. Then the Church said,
“Read this Book, but don’t get carried away interpreting it. We have the exclusive license for interpreting it. If you come up with any particular insights into this Book, be sure to let us know what they are. We’ll let you know whether your insights are acceptable or unacceptable. And, by the way, be especially careful when it comes to drawing conclusions about raptures and tribulations and armageddons and antichrists and beasts and other such matters. These are matters where even angels fear to tread. Say your prayers, confess your sins, celebrate the Eucharist on the Lord’s Day, obey the Ten Commandments, read the Bible, pray for the dead, forgive your enemies, preach to the unconverted, work for unity in the Church, do the duties of your state of life, be faithful to your wife or husband, raise your children in the love and fear of the Lord and, for crying out loud, don’t separate yourself from the Bishop of Rome and the Bishops in union with him.”

May God bless the Reverend Harold Egbert Camping and his followers. May God work a miracle and make the old man a Catholic before he dies and his followers as well. May all of our Protestant brothers and sisters come back home to full communion with the ancient Church that the Lord Jesus established.

stjos/stvdp:04.17.2011 - 03

Abuse allegations: true, false and truthy

by Richard Fitzgibbons MD and Peter Kleponis PhD

A number of important questions need to be addressed in regard to the allegations of inappropriate sexual behaviours against minors by 21 priests from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia who were placed on administrative leave on Ash Wednesday. This would include the process of further evaluation of priests previously evaluated and found to be innocent.
When minors accuse adults of inappropriate sexual behaviours, the response must be immediate, compassionate, in-depth and sincere and should be conducted by skilled criminal justice and mental health professionals. If the charges are found to be credible, criminal charges are filed against the individual and the charges made public.
To protect the good name of an individual, accusations of inappropriate sexual behaviours are not made public until the evaluation process is completed and accusations are deemed credible. This policy is in place for accusations against employers, co-workers, parents, teachers, coaches, physicians, attorneys and others.
The placement of 21 priests on leave shortly after the Philadelphia Grand Jury’s report on the outrageous child abuse by two priests has had a severely damaging effect upon the reputation, good name and future priestly ministry of these priests. This is because the majority of people in the Philadelphia area and around the country believe that all 21 priests were guilty of the same heinous acts as the two priests identified by the Grand Jury.
In fact, the majority of the 21 priests identified for further evaluations of accusations made against them previously went through such an intensive process in the past conducted by competent professionals without any new charges being filed against them. The result of the investigation was that the charges were not substantiated against many of those 21 priests. Then, these priests were notified and there was no disruption of their priestly ministry.
The failure of the Archdiocese to communicate these facts to the public is difficult to understand. The public falsely believes these priests are guilty.
Priests and Catholic laity who know that these priests were cleared earlier and deemed victims of false accusations are justifiably incensed and believe that this deserves further investigation.
It is important to understand that false accusations occur regularly against employers, co-workers, spouses in divorce cases, parents, educators, and members of the clergy. Such accusations have led often to reputations and careers being ruined, family relationships destroyed, and both professional and religious lives shattered.
False accusations are made for a number of reasons, including a desire for financial gain, excessive and misdirected anger, jealousy, mental instability, prejudice, a sociopathic personality disorder and, in regard to priests, a hatred of the Church.
In the Church false accusations have related recently to confusion in regard to what is referred to as “boundary issues” which are buzz words arising from the post-crisis programs in the Church. Boundary violations are behaviours that are viewed as being suspicious, but are not directly sexual. Priests are being increasingly accused of so-called boundary issues and of grooming minors while engaging in completely appropriate priestly ministry and behaviour toward youth in Catholic schools, on playgrounds and in parish centres or rectories.
In our professional opinion the failure to address clearly the basic causes of the crisis, described in 2005 by a member of the first National Review Board, Dr Paul McHugh, former chair of psychiatry at John Hopkins, as the homosexual predation of adolescent males, in the post-crisis programs led instead to a focus on ambiguous boundary conflicts.
In our clinical experience many of the priests accused of so-called boundary violations were strong in faith and in loyalty while their accusers often harboured resentment toward them. While accusations of specific sexual behaviours need to be immediately addressed, caution needs to be exercised in regard to the evaluation of so-called boundary violations. Certainly such priests should not be removed from ministry while an accusation is assessed, nor do they necessarily need a mental health evaluation.
Veteran attorney David Steier played a role in over 100 investigations of claims of sexual abuse by Catholic priests in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.
He stated in his deposition to the Superior Court in November 2010 that, “One retired FBI agent who worked with me to investigate many claims in the clergy cases told me, in his opinion, about one-half of the claims made in the clergy cases were either entirely false or so greatly exaggerated that the truth would not have supported prosecutable claim for childhood sexual abuse.” Most Catholics in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia do not know that thorough evaluations were done on the majority of the 21 priests and that they were found innocent of the charges against them.
A number of important questions need to be addressed. We need to know how it was determined that second evaluations determined to be necessary on priests previously evaluated by competent professionals and found innocent without further accusations being brought forward and who made such decisions. One of these priests was evaluated by us and by the leading forensic psychologist in Delaware County for “boundary violations.” Our reports indicated that he had not engaged in any inappropriate behaviours in his priestly ministry to students at the parish school.
Why did the Archdiocese not separate priests who were accused of boundary violations from those accused of sexual abuse? Why are priests treated differently than all other adults who do not have to leave their jobs while accusations of sexual abuse or boundary violations are investigated? Why are “repressed” memories of abuse from decades ago against priests given credibility when those against parents have been found to be false by mental health experts, including Dr Paul McHugh, former chair of psychiatry at Johns Hopkins, and Dr Elizabeth Loftus, who wrote “Creating False Memories”, (Scientific American, September, 1997) and the Myth of Repressed Memory: False Memories and Allegations of Sexual Abuse.
Most importantly, we deserve an explanation as to why the second evaluations of priests were not done confidentially while these priests continued their ministry, as occurs when sexual accusations or “boundary violations” are made against teachers, employers, lawyers, doctors, spouses and parents, so that their good names could have been protected.
Richard Fitzgibbons is the director of Comprehensive Counseling Services in West Conshohocken, PA. He has practiced psychiatry for 34 years with a specialty in the treatment of excessive anger. He co-authored Helping Clients Forgive: An Empirical Guide for Resolving Anger and Restoring Hope, 2000, for American Psychological Association Books and has also written on conflicts in priestly life. He is a consultant to the Congregation for the Clergy at the Vatican. Peter Kleponis, PhD, is the assistant director of Comprehensive Counseling Services. He has given conferences in many dioceses to priests on pornography addiction.

Comment on the above: This is the most helpful, thoughtful and intelligent pieces of commentary I have come across on the matter of the 21 Philadelphia priests who were suspended last month by Cardinal Rigali. I have deep respect for Cardinal Rigali. He is our Metropolitan Archbishop and a thoroughly decent man. I believe he acted with sincerity and with the best interests of the Church in mind when he suspended these 21 priests.
Nevertheless, I believe his action was unjust, unwise and precipitous and has done incomparable harm to the morale of the clergy of Philadelphia. I hope not irreparable harm. Sincerity is an admirable quality in any human being, but it does not replace wisdom or justice. May God help the Church of Philadelphia survive this unparalleled crisis.
Cardinal Rigali will observe his 76th birthday this week (19 April). Last year, having turned 75, he submitted to Pope Benedict a letter offering to retire as Archbishop of Philadelphia. I am guessing that retirement is becoming a more and more attractive prospect for the embattled Cardinal.

stjos/stvdp: 04.17.2011 - 04 /05

Date: Saturday, May 7, 2011
Time: 09:00 am to 11:00 am
Place: Schuylkill Medical Center, South Jackson Street
Outpatient Surgery Center, 200 Schuylkill Medical Plaza
Sponsor: Advanced Dermatology Associates, LTD., Dr. Stephen M Purcell
No registration necessary. Healthy snacks will be served.
Additional information: Denise Getzey 570-621-5273 or Cheryl Yeager 570-621-4132

died on Friday, 08 April. He is the brother of St. Joseph parishioner Dennis J. Devine and was himself, at one time, a member of the parish. He attended St. Vincent dePaul School and served as an altar boy at St. Vincent’s. Michael was 63 years old.

AGNES T. POWLICK HERCEK died on Thursday, 14 April. She is the sister of St. Vincent dePaul parishioner Barbara Powlick Petrousky and was herself, at one time, a member of the parish. Agnes was 90 years old.
Eternal rest grant unto Michael and Agnes, O Lord, and let the perpetual light shine upon them. May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

It is our policy — and we would like it to be our common practice — to include in the bulletin a notice (similar to the above) whenever a person dies who is related to a member of our parish as: mother or father, husband or wife, brother or sister, grandmother or grandfather, grandson or granddaughter.
Obviously, I will not usually know about such deaths unless I am told. So, please make it a point to call the Rectory in order to let us know.
We scheduled Stations of the Cross twelve times during the Season of Lent: six times in St. Joseph Church and six times in St. Vincent dePaul Church.
Tonight (Palm Sunday night), we will have the twelfth and final Lenten Stations,
It will be at 07:00 pm at St. Joseph Church.
We encourage everyone to attend.
Somehow or other, it has always seemed to me that the Lord and the Holy Mother are very much aware of people who show up for Stations of the Cross.
You know how it is with being present at crucial moments in people’s lives?
People tend to remember who took the time to be with them in those times that were particularly difficult.
Attending Stations of the Cross is similar to stepping out of the crowd (like Veronica) to wipe the blood, sweat and spit from the Lord’s face or similar to volunteering (like Simon) to help the Lord carry the cross.

stjos/stvdp: 04.17.2011 - 06

I had a useful conversation this past week with a gentleman who is a long-standing member of St. Joseph Parish — and also a friend of mine from years prior to my coming to Girardville. He was asking me about the Holy Week / Easter schedule. I told him what it was.
Summarizing the conversation, I remember that he made two observations:
a) He thought that it was not a good idea that the 11:30 am Mass at St. Joseph’s on Easter Sunday be celebrated “in the extraordinary form” (Tridentine) because this might prompt some persons to avoid going to St. Joseph Church for Easter Mass. (Point of information: Easter falls on the last Sunday of the month of April this year and it is on the last Sunday of the month that we schedule the Tridentine Mass.) I understood his concern and thought it deserved some sort of accommodation. I was reluctant to depart from the custom already established of having the Tridentine Mass on the last Sunday of the month. People tend to rely on the regularity of a schedule. So, I said to my friend, “How about this as a solution? We’ll keep the 11:30 am Mass on Easter as a Tridentine Mass but we’ll schedule an extra Mass at 10:00 am at St. Joseph’s on Easter Sunday.” He thought this was a reasonable solution. So, that’s what we’re going to do. On Easter Sunday, there will be a 10:00 am Mass in St. Joseph Church, in addition to the 11:30 am Mass and, of course, in addition to the Easter Vigil Mass.
b) He thought that it was not a good idea for me to schedule separate and distinct Masses (Liturgies) at the two churches on Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday (i.e. Easter Vigil). The points that he made, as I recall, were the following: (1) It puts too much of a burden on the priest (that’s me) to have to do double duty on those three days, especially inasmuch as he (the priest) is not getting any younger; (2) It would be good for the Catholic people of Girardville to experience the fellowship of coming together as “one parish” for these important days because we are inevitably going to be one parish and it’s kind of a surprise that we are not already one parish. I told my friend the following: (1) I’ve been doing double duty on the Sacred Triduum since 1987 and it hasn’t done me any harm. I am still physically fit and capable of doing it. If and when the day comes when I am not fit and capable — well, I’ll deal with that when it comes. In addition to which, I get a lot of grace out of celebrating the Triduum twice and, God knows, I need all the grace I can get. (2) I am well aware of the chatter about “one parish”. I am so aware of it that I am bored with it. All I know is that, as of 2011, we are what we have always been. We are two parishes. The Front Office will let me know when we are no longer two parishes. Until then, we are two parishes and I feel obliged to provide services appropriate to two parishes. Moreover, by providing double services on the Triduum, I am providing double opportunity for people to participate. If someone can’t make it at the time scheduled for one church, perhaps he or she can make it at the time scheduled for the other church. That has to be a plus! My other reason is somewhat mystical, but very real to me. It is this: I have reverence for the two buildings that we identify as St. Joseph Church and St. Vincent dePaul Church. Conducting the liturgies of the Sacred Triduum within these buildings is a kind of sanctification of these two noble edifices. The bricks and stones and wood and mortar that make up these buildings and the real estate on which these buildings rest — taking them all together, they are holy things, they are sacramental. They are “awful places” in the classic sense of the word “awful”. They are older than any of us and were utilized for worship by saints, our ancestors in the Faith here in Girardville. To deprive these buildings of the celebration of the sacred mysteries on the Days of Awe would be a deprivation. As pastor, I feel a responsibility towards the angels of these buildings not to deprive the buildings of fulfilling the purpose for which they were built.

stjos/stvdp: 04.17.2011 - 07

Note: “Triduum” means “three days”. “Sacred Triduum” refers to Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday

Church law does not permit the celebration of Mass on the morning of Holy Thursday, except for the Chrism Mass in the Cathedral. However, the Chrism Mass has been transferred to Wednesday in our diocese.
There will be two Masses in Girardville on Holy Thursday.
05:00 pm — St. Joseph Church
07:30 pm — St. Vincent dePaul Church

Church law does not permit the celebration of Mass at all on Good Friday. Instead, there is the Liturgy of the Passion and Death of the Lord. This Liturgy will be celebrated twice in Girardville on Good Friday.
02:00 pm — St. Vincent dePaul Church
07:00 pm — St. Joseph Church

Church law does not permit the celebration of Mass during the day on Holy Saturday. The earliest that Mass may be celebrated is 08:00 pm. This is the Easter Vigil Mass. This Mass will be celebrated twice in Girardville.
08:00 pm — St. Joseph Church
10:30 pm — St. Vincent dePaul Church

08:30 am — St. Vincent dePaul Church
10:00 am — St. Joseph Church
11:30 am — St. Joseph Church (Tridentine Mass)

There will not be the usual 08:00 am Mass in St. Joseph Chapel.
Reason: Frs. Brennan and Connolly need to go to the Cathedral for the Chrism Mass. However, there will be a Mass at St. Vincent dePaul Church at 07:00 pm on Wednesday, as usual.

We shall be available to bless your baskets of Easter food at St. Vincent dePaul Church at 10:30 am.

stjos/stvdp: 04.17.2011 - 08


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