MASS SCHEDULE: 0815 APRIL
SAINT
JOSEPH CHURCH
GIRARDVILLE

Saturday, 07 April
Vigil of Easter Sunday
08:00 pm — JOSEPH C. CHIARETTI
by his wife, Alice

Sunday, 08 April
Easter Sunday of the Resurrection of the Lord
11:30 am — MICHAEL DEVINE
by Dennis Devine

Monday, 09 April
Monday within the Octave of Easter
08:00 am — Health and God’s blessings on AMANDA DUNHAM and child
by her grandparents, Sal and Mary

Tuesday, 10 April
Tuesday within the Octave of Easter
07:00 pm — ROBERT PRUNER MD
by Jim and Cindy Coyle

Wednesday, 11 April
Wednesday within the Octave of Easter
08:00 am — God’s blessings on Sister MARY RAYMOND, OP
by her Mom and Dad

Thursday, 12 April
Thursday within the Octave of Easter
08:00 am — MITRO KEETSOCK
by Camillo Fernandes

Friday, 13 April
Friday within the Octave of Easter
08:00 am — LARRY SANTELLI
by Celeste DeLuca

Saturday, 14 April
Saturday within the Octave of Easter
08:00 am — PAUL and ELIZABETH ZIELINSKI
by EBC
Vigil of Sunday
05:30 pm — JULIA CLARKE
by the Clarke Trust

Sunday, 15 April
Second Sunday of Easter / Feast of the Divine Mercy
11:30 am — ROSEMARY RIZZARDI
by her family

 MASS SCHEDULE: 0815 APRIL
SAINT
Vincent dePAUL CHURCH
GIRARDVILLE 
     

Saturday, 07 April
Vigil of Easter Sunday
10:30 pm — DONALD and PHYLLIS (Coyle) BUCK
by Jim and Cindy Coyle

Sunday, 08 April
Easter Sunday of the Resurrection of the Lord
08:30 am — DECEASED: HOLY NAME SOCIETY
by the HNS

Monday, 09 April
Monday within the Octave of Easter
07:00 pm — ANNA KOSTELANSKY
by OPM

Tuesday, 10 April
Tuesday within the Octave of Easter
08:00 am — DECEASED: McVANNE and POLCHER FAMILIES
by Peter and Violet Smolock

Wednesday, 11 April
Wednesday within the Octave of Easter
07:00 pm — ROSEMARIE YOHN
by Jim and Cindy Coyle

Thursday, 12 April
Thursday within the Octave of Easter
07:00 pm — HELEN KISHONIS KUPCHINSKY
by her niece, Barbara, and her nephew, George

Friday, 13 April
Friday within the Octave of Easter
05:00 pm — JOHN and MARY ROSA
by Jim and Cindy Coyle

Saturday, 14 April
Vigil of Sunday
04:00 pm — AGNES HERCEK
by her sister / brother-in-law, Barbara and John Petrousky

Sunday, 15 April
Second Sunday of Easter / Feast of the Divine Mercy
08:30 am — FRANK E. WHYTENA
by Jim and Georgann Connell

stjos/stvdp: 04.08.2012 - 01


COLLECTION TOTALS FROM LAST WEEKEND:
31 MARCH / 01 APRIL


Saint Joseph Parish
:
Receipts for parish purposes: $1,793.00 from the Sunday envelopes; $65.00 from the second collection (plate); $288.00 from the Dues envelopes; $66.00 from the Building maintenance envelopes; $25.00 from the Fuel envelopes; $81.00 from the Easter flowers envelopes; $91.00 from the loose.
Total: $2,409.00
Receipts for non-parish purposes: $345.00 from the Rice Bowl envelopes
Analysis: When one deducts from the total of the receipts for parish purposes ($2,409.00) 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 $1,257.83 is available from this collection for operating the parish.


Saint Vincent DePaul Parish:
Receipts for parish purposes: $1,084.00 from the Sunday envelopes; $37.00 from the second collection (plate); $217.00 from the Dues envelopes; $5.00 from the Building maintenance envelopes; $10.00 from the Easter flowers envelopes; $35.00 from the loose.
Total: $1,388.00
Receipts for non-parish purposes: $110.00 from the Rice Bowl envelopes
Analysis: When one deducts from the total of the receipts for parish purposes ($1,388.00) 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 $625.18 is available from this collection for operating the parish.

CONFESSION SCHEDULE THIS WEEK

Sunday, 08 April
03:30 to 04:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Monday, 09 April
03:30 to 04:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Tuesday, 10 April
03:30 to 04:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Wednesday, 11 April
03:30 to 04:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Thursday, 12 April
03:30 to 04:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Friday, 13 April
03:30 to 04:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Saturday, 14 April
03:30 to 04:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Sunday, 15 April
03:30 to 04:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church
This unusual Confession schedule is meant to harmonize with the Divine Mercy devotions this week. See page 08 for schedule of Divine Mercy devotions.

stjos/stvdp: 04.08.2012 - 02


SOME RECENT NEWS ITEMS AND SOME COMMENTARY THEREON
OBAMA CALLS JESUS “A SON OF GOD”

Speaking to a group of Christian clergy at the Easter Prayer Breakfast he hosted at the White House this past Wednesday (04 April), President Barack Obama referred to Jesus Christ as “a son of God.” Speaking about Easter, he said: “It’s an opportunity for us to reflect on the triumph of the resurrection, and to give thanks for the all-important gift of grace. And for me, and I’m sure for some of you, it’s also a chance to remember the tremendous sacrifice that led up to that day, and all that Christ endured--not just as a son of God, but as a human being.” (CNSNews.com)
Comment: I do not look to the president, nor to any politician, for my theology. Moreover, I concede to President Obama the same right that I want conceded to me, viz. the right to believe or to disbelieve whatever I want, the right to choose my own religion. Not only that, but I concede to President Obama the right not to believe what I believe. Having made those disclaimers, I ask everyone to notice what President Obama said about Jesus. He said that Jesus was “a son of God”. Please note that, from the point of view of the Catholic Faith, it is sheer heresy to call Jesus “a son of God”. If you ever hear me refer to Jesus as “a son of God”, you will know that I have lost the Faith! It is the ancient faith of the Catholic Church that JESUS IS THE SON OF GOD, that JESUS IS THE ONLY-BEGOTTEN SON OF GOD, that JESUS IS THE ONLY SON OF THE FATHER, that JESUS IS CONSUBSTANTIAL WITH THE FATHER. Let no one say that this is a mere quibble, that it is “just a matter of words”, that there is no big deal difference between “a son” and “the son”. The difference is absolutely enormous.
If a person believes that Jesus is “a son of God”, then he or she is not a Christian. This is because referring to Jesus as “a son of God” is a soft way of denying His divinity. It is a soft way of saying that Jesus was one heck of a nice guy and a great teacher and moral example. But that kind of “faith” does not qualify one to be a Christian. To be a Christian, one must believe that Jesus is God.
By the way, just so I can antagonize Republicans as well as Democrats on this same issue, please note that Mitt Romney is not a Christian. Mormons are not Christians. They do not believe that Jesus is God. Please don’t run away with this comment. I am not saying anything nasty about Mitt Romney. I credit him with sincerity. He has a right to choose his religion, to choose what he wants to believe or not believe. If a person chooses to be a Mormon, then he or she necessarily chooses not to believe in the Holy Trinity or in the divinity of Jesus Christ.
If one may safely presume that we shall have two choices come November for President of the United States, viz. Mr. Obama and Mr. Romney, then we may safely anticipate that, regardless of the outcome, we shall have a President who (a) will think that he is a Christian and (b) will not be a Christian. Interesting! Oh well, there’s always 2016!
HUGO CHAVEZ GETS RELIGION
"Give me life even if it's ... painful life. I don't care. Christ, give me your crown. Give it to me, I will bleed. ... Give me life because I still have things to do for these people," he said. "Don't take me yet." Chavez sat between his parents, holding hands with his mother and father while a priest led a prayer for the president's health. At one point, he shed tears that ran down his cheeks. Other relatives, including his older brother, Adan, joined him at the Mass in his home state of Barinas. Immediately following the Mass, Chavez hung a red rosary over his neck and became visibly emotional as he spoke to the small crowd attending the event. "Today I'm more Christian than ever. I've entrusted myself to the hands of Christ," he said Wednesday night. "I'm clinging to life and I ask God, Christ my Lord, to continue giving us life." (AP)
Comment: I’ve never been fond of Hugo Chavez, President (dictator) of Venezuela, but I’m starting to soften up towards him. The man is starting to contemplate his mortality. There’s one good thing to say about cancer! It focuses one’s attention on what is important and what is not. And I notice that even Fidel Castro is getting religion! (Fidel is one of Hugo’s heroes!) Did you see that Fidel was making nice with Pope Benedict recently and even asked the Pope to send him a book that he could read that would help him to understand the Catholic religion better? I would bet that the Pope has a book or two he could send Fidel. Old age with its attendant infirmities — even without cancer — is a way that God has of getting our attention.

stjos/stvdp:04.08.2012 - 03


 The Answer Priest

Dear Answer Priest:
I know that Saint Paul says that we are all going to be raised from the dead.
I would like to believe that, but I have a problem.
You see, my grandmother took a trip last month down to Colombia in South America in order to buy some coffee beans. (Grandmom always insisted on grinding her own coffee beans, but was never sure that she was getting genuine Colombian coffee beans from the supermarket. That’s why she decided to go to Colombia.) While she was there, she decided to make a side trip to Venezuela in order to talk some sense into the local dictator, Hugo Chavez. So, she went down to the Orinoco River, rented a canoe, pointed it towards Venezuela and took off down the river. Grandmom was not an experienced canoeist and, at some point, she hit some rapids and fell out of the canoe. She tried to swim to shore but, most unfortunately, met up with a swarm of piranhas. If you know anything about piranhas, you know that they are voracious and opportunistic little critters! We were not able to recover any of Grandmom’s remains. We were able to have a Memorial Mass for her, but not a Mass of Christian Burial and, of course, no interment. So, my question is: How is she going to be raised from the dead? Those piranhas really did a job on her!
Bereaved Grandson
Dear Bereaved Grandson:

This is a very interesting question!
Before trying to answer your question, allow me to tender my sympathies to you on the death of your grandmother. She was certainly an intrepid and memorable woman! I wish her all the best in the life to come.
At the same time, please allow me to slap you on the wrist (ever so gently, of course) for thinking that God’s gracious designs for your grandmother can be frustrated by a measly swarm of piranhas! Do you really think God is so dumb?
If I understand your question correctly, you are wondering how God will be able to raise your grandmother from the dead inasmuch as your grandmother did not leave any mortal remains behind for you to bury. You are wondering, “How can God raise up from the grave what was never lowered into the grave?” Or “How can God unbury what was never buried?” — or something like that! Am I correct? Is that your question? If it is, then let us proceed!
First of all, let us clarify our thinking as to what “resurrection from the dead” means!
Many people think of “resurrection from the dead” as being more or less synonymous with “resuscitation of a corpse”.
But “resuscitation of a corpse” is NOT what we mean when we speak about the Resurrection of Jesus from the dead, nor is it what we mean when we profess our faith in “the resurrection of the dead and the life everlasting” in the Creed at Mass.
Jesus performed three miracles that are classified as miracles of resurrection: (a) the son of the widow of Naim; (b) the daughter of Jairus, the leader of the synagogue; (c) Lazarus, the brother of Martha and Mary. All three of these miracles involved resuscitation of corpses.
All three of these persons resumed the lives that they had been living prior to their deaths.
(These resurrections, although neat, were mere previews of the real resurrection that is coming!)
But the Resurrection of Jesus is not the “resuscitation of a corpse” nor will the resurrections that will take place on the last day be resuscitations of corpses.
Jesus did not “resume” the life He had been living prior to His death. He entered into a new life. When Jesus rose from the dead, He did so in His new Body, His resurrection Body.
When your grandmother rises from the dead, she will do so in a new body, her resurrection body.
When the general resurrection occurs, the souls of all departed human persons will enter into new bodies, bodies that are entirely appropriate for the particular souls.
So, what happened to the corpse of Jesus that was lying in the tomb from Friday evening to Sunday morning? It was taken up (subsumed) into the Resurrected Body of Jesus. God would not allow decay to touch His Holy One.
But the important point to make is this: The visible presence of Jesus’ corpse in the tomb after His death was not an essential condition of His Resurrection. The Resurrection of Jesus could have and would have taken place even if His corpse had been destroyed.
To illustrate the point, we make this hypothesis. It is a “just suppose” hypothesis: Just suppose Pontius Pilate had not permitted the corpse of Jesus to be released to His friends and family. Just suppose Pontius Pilate had ordered the corpse of Jesus to be cremated and the ashes scattered to the four winds or thrown into a river. What effect would this have had on the Resurrection of Jesus?
The answer, of course, is: None whatsoever!
It would not have prevented the various post-Resurrection appearances of Jesus to His disciples. It would not have altered the nature of these appearances in any way. Jesus would have been just as real and just as substantial and just as physical in these appearances as it is recorded that He was in the Gospel accounts.
Continuing with the “just suppose” hypothesis: If there had been no corpse to bury, then one of the evidences of the Resurrection would have been removed, viz. the empty tomb. We are glad for the evidence of the empty tomb.
But — and here is another essential point coming up: The empty tomb, although useful and helpful in bringing us to faith in the Resurrection of Jesus is not, in and of itself, definitive. The post-Resurrection appearances of Jesus are the clincher!
Summarizing: The evidences for the Resurrection of Jesus are:

a) the empty tomb
b) the post-Resurrection appearances

Both are important, but the post-Resurrection appearances are the more important.
Now, let’s get back to your dear, departed grandmother. When the Lord comes back to raise the dead, He will raise your grandmother. How will He “raise” her? He will raise her by giving her a new body. Let us devoutly hope that Grandmom died in the state of grace. If she did, then the body He will give her will be glorious and immortal. It is true that Grandmom will not be able to show you her empty grave. But, quite frankly, I don’t think that will be any big deal! She will be able to entertain you and all the saints with the story about how “I was in this canoe, you see, and all of a sudden, I was in the water surrounded by piranhas”. Then she can describe her feelings at that point. That will be much more interesting than any empty grave.
The Answer Priest

stjos/stvdp: 04.08.2012 - 04 /05


LOTTERY-BASKET RAFFLE!
The St. Vincent dePaul Parish Finance Council, in conjunction with the Holy Name Society and the Holy Rosary Society, is sponsoring a lottery-basket raffle to help raise funds for parish projects.
The Council is asking all members (and friends) of StVdP Parish to participate in this project.
How would one participate?
Well, first of all, by donating lottery tickets!
We are referring, of course, to Pennsylvania State Lottery Instant tickets of whatever kind and whatever denomination.
$1.00 / $2.00 / $5.00 / $10.00 / $20.00
We are requesting that tickets be dropped off in the collection baskets of the next two weekends, viz. 14 / 15 April and 21 / 22 April. The selling of raffle tickets will begin on the weekend of 28 / 29 April. The drawing will take place over the Memorial Day weekend.
FIRST HOLY COMMUNION CHILDREN will meet in St. Vincent dePaul Rectory at 06:00 pm on Wednesday, 11 April. There will be a total of six meetings of the children with Fr. Connolly prior to their FHC. These meetings will last for one hour each. Just so we are all on the same page, please know that I anticipate having eight children for FHC: Bryce B; Morgan B; Kirsten H; Charizma H; Chloe H; Dillon O; Zane P; Jared T.
IN A RECENT BULLETIN, we said that there would be a joint meeting of the two parish finance councils on Tuesday, 17 April. It was pointed out to me that this date had already been specified for a meeting of the St. Joseph Parish Finance Council for some particular agenda. So, with my apologies for the confusion, please know that we shall re-schedule the date of our joint meeting.
THE FOOD PANTRY is running low. Please help to re-stock it! We do get requests for food from persons in need. Please bring non-perishable donations of food to StVdP Rectory or else to either StJosChurch or StVdPChurch.

stjos/stvdp: 04.08.2012 - 06


JESUS DESCENDED INTO WHAT?
WHY WOULD A NICE JEWISH BOY WANT TO GO TO HELL?

In the Apostles Creed, we proclaim that Jesus “was crucified, died and was buried. He descended into Hell. The third day He rose again from the dead.” The word “Hell” always raises questions and always requires some explanation.
First of all, we have to know that the word “Hell” (as it is used here) is a “catch-all” word for “the abode of the Dead”. It is an attempt to translate the Hebrew word “Sheol”. (Quite frankly, I wish we had kept the word “Sheol” and would use it in the Apostles Creed instead of “Hell”. It would sure save a lot of remedial explanations!)
Pious Jews of Jesus’ time believed that, when a person died, he went to Sheol. If he was a good and just person, he went to that part of Sheol known as “the bosom of Abraham”, there to await the resurrection of the just. If he was a wicked person, he went to that part of Sheol where there was pain and retribution, there to await the final judgment when God would settle accounts. Interesting is this: It seems that this latter place could include both the “irredeemably wicked” (who were destined to suffer for all eternity) and the “redeemably wicked” (who would suffer for a while, but were destined to be released). We note here a distinction between what we Catholics call “Hell” and “Purgatory”. (It is a respectable theological opinion that “the rich man” from the parable of “The Rich Man and Lazarus” was in Purgatory. Pope Benedict thinks so!)
St. Thomas Aquinas says that Jesus descended into “the hells”, by which he means to distinguish the three places where human beings who had died before Jesus could possibly be: (a) the just who were ready to enter heaven; (b) the just who were in a state of purification; (c) the permanently wicked. Here we see the categories to which we Catholics are accustomed to refer: (a) heaven; (b) purgatory; (c) hell.
Here is what Aquinas wrote: Christ descended into each of the hells, but in different manner. For going down into the hell of the lost He wrought this effect, that by descending thither He put them to shame for their unbelief and wickedness: but to them who were detained in Purgatory He gave hope of attaining to glory: while upon the holy Fathers detained in hell solely on account of original sin, He shed the light of glory everlasting.
Simplifying Aquinas’s language somewhat, we summarize this passage as follows:

• Jesus descended into the Hell of the irredeemably wicked in order to put them to shame for their unbelief and wickedness.

• Jesus descended into Purgatory in order to encourage them as they were doing their penance and moving towards their ultimate reward.

• Jesus descended to the realm of the just in order to shed upon them the light of everlasting glory and to take them with Him to Heaven.

Some important theological points are being made here. One of them is this: that Hell is a place of eternal punishment for those who have placed themselves beyond the pale of salvation. Another point is this: that even the just who were perfectly purified and eligible to enter into Heaven COULD NOT ENTER INTO HEAVEN unless and until the death of Jesus on the Cross.
This means that even such a holy man as Saint Joseph, the foster father of Jesus, did not enter into Heaven until the death of Jesus. Why not? Wasn’t he good enough? No, he was not good enough! Nobody is “good enough” to go to Heaven, not even the most morally / ethically perfect human being. Heaven is accessible only to those who belong to Jesus Christ. Tell that to those of your family who don’t go to Mass but are depending on their own goodness to get them to Heaven!

stjos/stvdp: 04.08.2012 - 07



THE DIVINE MERCY NOVENA
continues.

Background: A novena is any devotion that encompasses a period of nine days. A novena is usually observed in preparation for some particular event or anniversary or feast day.
In the case of the devotion known as “The Divine Mercy”, the novena always begins on Good Friday and ends on Easter Saturday (i.e. the Saturday after Easter Sunday).
The heart of the novena devotion is simply this: (a) the praying of the Chaplet of Divine Mercy and (b) the reciting of the prayer for the particular day of the novena.
This is in preparation for THE FEAST OF DIVINE MERCY, which is on the Second Sunday of Easter, (i.e. the Sunday after Easter Sunday).
We shall observe the Feast of Divine Mercy next Sunday (15 April) and we are having Novena devotions each day for nine days prior to the Feast.
The schedule is as follows:

Friday, 06 April: 12:00 noon
Saturday, 07 April: 12:00 noon
Sunday, 08 April: 03:00 pm
Monday, 09 April: 03:00 pm
Tuesday, 10 April: 03:00 pm
Wednesday, 11 April: 03:00 pm
Thursday, 12 April: 03:00 pm
Friday, 13 April: 03:00 pm
Saturday, 14 April: 03:00 pm

All of these will be in St. Vincent dePaul Church. All of them (except, of course, the ones on Good Friday and Holy Saturday), will include Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament. Then we will sing the Chaplet of Divine Mercy and say the prayer assigned for the day. Then the priest will adjourn to the confessional for anyone who wishes to go to Confession. Then, at 04:00 pm, there will be Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. If you need to leave before Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, feel free to do so. Do as your schedule requires.

We shall observe the Feast of the Divine Mercy next Sunday in much the same way, except that we will add a procession with the Blessed Sacrament and the Image of the Divine Mercy.

I strongly urge every member of the parish and every resident of Girardville, regardless of religious affiliation, to participate in the Divine Mercy novena and in the devotions on Divine Mercy Sunday.

stjos/stvdp: 04.08.2012 - 08


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