MASS SCHEDULE: 2027 MAY
SAINT
JOSEPH CHURCH
GIRARDVILLE

Saturday, 19 May
Vigil of Sunday
05:30 pm — KATHLEEN KELLY RITRO
by Pat and Marci Canavan

Sunday, 20 May
Seventh Sunday of Easter
11:30 am — PARKER LAVERTY
by Jim and Cindy Coyle

Monday, 21 May
St. Christopher Magallanes, priest, and companions, martyrs (OptMem)
08:00 am — DECEASED: PETER DeLUCA FAMILY
by Celeste DeLuca

Tuesday, 22 May
St. Rita of Cascia, religious (OptMem)
07:00 pm — CORA PRETTI
by OPM

Wednesday, 23 May
Easter Weekday
08:00 am — KATHRYN A. GRAVISH
by OPM

Thursday, 24 May
Easter Weekday
08:00 am — ANNA MARIE BIRSTER STYNER
by her sister, Jean Birster Weist

Friday, 25 May
St. Bede the Venerable, priest, doctor; St. Gregory VII, pope; St. Mary Magdalene de Pazzi, virgin (OptMems)
08:00 am — BETTY JEAN MUSTER
by Jim and Cindy Coyle

Saturday, 26 May
St. Philip Neri, priest (OblMem)
08:00 am — God’s blessings: Msgr. GEORGE PARNASSUS
by Jim and Cindy Coyle
Vigil of Pentecost
05:30 pm — AMEDEO ZELLI
by Rosemary Zelli

Sunday, 27 May
Pentecost
10:00 am — JAMES and PATRICIA CHRISTMAN
by Lucretia Christman
11:30 am — TIMOTHY and AGNES CONNOLLY
by their nephew, Edward

 MASS SCHEDULE: 2027 MAY
SAINT
Vincent dePAUL CHURCH
GIRARDVILLE 
     

Saturday, 19 May
Vigil of Sunday
04:00 pm — IRENE HAMA GILLIS
by M/M John Gillis

Sunday, 20 May
Seventh Sunday of Easter
08:30 am — DECEASED: CONNELL and KARVOIS FAMILIES
by the Connell family

Monday, 21 May
St. Christopher Magallanes, priest, and companions, martyrs (OptMem)
07:00 pm — God’s blessings on EBC
(46th anniversary of ordination to priesthood)
by friends

Tuesday, 22 May
St. Rita of Cascia, religious (OptMem)
08:00 am — JOANNE GIBAS
by OPM

Wednesday, 23 May
Easter Weekday
07:00 pm — DAN WOZNISKY
by OPM

Thursday, 24 May
Easter Weekday
07:00 pm — God’s blessings and health: NEMIA ZEMANEK
by Jim and Eva Gontis

Friday, 25 May
St. Bede the Venerable, priest, doctor; St. Gregory VII, pope;
St. Mary Magdalene de Pazzi, virgin (OptMems)
05:00 pm — FRANK NIADNA
by OPM

Saturday, 26 May
Vigil of Pentecost
04:00 pm — JOHN J. JOYCE (4th anniversary)
by his wife, Jeanne

Sunday, 27 May
Pentecost
08:30 am — ALBERTA COONEY
by her sister, Elizabeth Ryan

stjos/stvdp: 05.20.2012 - 01


COLLECTION TOTALS FROM LAST WEEKEND:
12 / 13 MAY


Saint Joseph Parish
:
Receipts for parish purposes: $779.00 from the Sunday envelopes; $27.00 from the second collection (plate); $60.00 from the Dues envelopes; $160.00 from the Building maintenance envelopes; $79.00 from the loose.
Total: $1,105.00
Receipts for non-parish purposes: — 0 —
Analysis: When one deducts from the total of the receipts for parish purposes ($1,105.00) 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 ($46.17) is available from this collection for operating the parish. PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS IS A DEFICIT. DEFICITS ARE DEFINITELY DOWNERS.

Saint Vincent DePaul Parish:
Receipts for parish purposes: $858.00 from the Sunday envelopes; $36.00 from the second collection (plate); $32.00 from the Dues envelopes; $204.00 from the Building maintenance envelopes; $38.00 from the loose.
Total: $1,168.00
Receipts for non-parish purposes: — 0 —
Analysis: When one deducts from the total of the receipts for parish purposes ($1,168.00) 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 $405.18 is available from this collection for operating the parish.

CONFESSION SCHEDULE THIS WEEK

Wednesday, 23 May
02:30 to 03:30 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Thursday, 24 May
06:00 to 07:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church

Friday, 25 May
06:30 to 07:30 pm
St. Joseph Chapel

EXPOSITION OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT

Wednesday, 23 May
02:00 to 04:00 pm
St. Vincent dePaul Church
Scripture Rosary at about 03:40 pm, followed by Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament

Friday, 25 May
06:00 to 08:00 pm
St. Joseph Chapel
Vespers at about 07:30 pm, followed by Chaplet of Divine Mercy,
concluding with Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament

stjos/stvdp: 05.20.2012 - 02


ACT OF CONSECRATION TO THE HOLY SPIRIT
On my knees before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses,
I offer myself, soul and body to You,
Eternal Spirit of God.
I adore the brightness of Your purity,
the unerring keenness of Your justice,
and the might of Your love.
You are the Strength and Light of my soul.
In You I live and move and am.
I desire never to grieve You
by unfaithfulness to grace
and I pray with all my heart
to be kept from the smallest sin against You.
Mercifully guard my every thought
and grant that I may always watch for Your light,
and listen to Your voice,
and follow Your gracious inspirations.
I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You,
by Your compassion
to watch over me in my weakness.
Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus
and looking at His Five Wounds,
and trusting in His Precious Blood
and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart,
I implore You, Adorable Spirit,
Helper of my infirmity,
to keep me in Your grace
that I may never sin against You.
Give me grace, O Holy Spirit,
Spirit of the Father and the Son,
to say to You always and everywhere,
"Speak Lord for Your servant heareth."
Amen.
A PRIEST NAMED “SMITH” told me (actually told the class) that devotion to the Third Person of the Blessed Trinity was a sign of spiritual maturity. (At least that is what I remember that he said. I’m sure he said more than that.) I have always wanted to be mature and haven’t given up hope that, someday, before cashing in my chips, I shall be. The priest was Father Thomas G. Smith of the Diocese of Newark NJ. (He was on the faculty of Mt. St. Mary Seminary when I was a student there.) Of all the priests I have ever met in my life, Fr. Tom Smith ranks among the top three (maybe “top one”) of “holiest priests I have ever been privileged to know”. I took (and take) seriously what he told us. So, I suggest that you say the prayer printed above, especially as we approach Pentecost Sunday, (27 May) the Solemnity of the Outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon the Church.

stjos/stvdp:05.20.2012 - 03


                     SOME Q & A ON “CATHOLIC PRIESTS AND THE SEXUAL ABUSE PROBLEM”
Background: In this Q&A, I am interviewing myself — which is kind of pathetic, when you come to think about it. It comes with age.
Q —How many Catholic priests are there in the USA?
A —40,271 (2011 census figure). This includes both active priests and retired priests. It does not include priests who have been dismissed or who have voluntarily left active priestly ministry.
Q —Of these 40,271, how many of them have had credible accusations of sexual misdeeds against minors brought against them? (By “credible” we mean “credible according to the standards of the review boards of their particular dioceses or religious orders.”)
A —Twenty-three (23)
Q —What would that be as a percentage?
A —I am using my calculator. I am dividing 23 by 40,271. Let me see. That comes out to 0.000571. Rounding it out, that would come to slightly less than six-one hundreths of one percent (0.06%) of the Catholic priests in the United States in 2011 were “credibly accused” (according to Church standards) of sexual misdeeds against minors.
Q —Of the twenty-three “credibly accused” according to Church standards, how many were determined to be “credibly accused” by law enforcement agencies?
A —Nine (9).
Q —What would that be as a percentage?
A —Back to my calculator. I am dividing 9 by 40,271. Let me see. That comes out to 0.0002234. Rounding it out, that would come to slightly more than two-one hundredths of one percent (0.02%) of the Catholic priests in the United States (using the 2011 census) were “credibly accused” (according to law-enforcement standards) of sexual misdeeds against minors.
Q —Now put that in positive terms. What percentage of Catholic priests in the USA (using the 2011 census figures) have never been credibly accused of sexual misdeeds against minors?
A —99.94% have never been accused of sexual misdeeds against minors.
Q —And what percentage of Catholic priests in the USA (using the 2011 census figures) have never been accused by law enforcement agencies of sexual misdeeds against minors?
A —99.98% of Catholic priests in the USA (using the 2011 census figures) have never been accused by law enforcement agencies of sexual misdeeds against minors.
Q —So, is that good?
A —It’s better than it had been in the past, but it’s not good enough! NO Catholic priest should ever do anything that would open him up to being credibly accused of any sexual misdeed against a minor. (Come to think of it, not against a major either!) But it is what it is. Obviously, there will always be the possibility of a malicious and untruthful allegation. Not a whole lot we can do to prevent that! On the other hand, going back to your question, I think we can say that the situation today is a lot better than it used to be. I think we can also say that most people don’t realize that the media are engaged in a war against the Catholic Church and that priests are on the front line of the war. Sometimes we priests feel a certain kinship with Uriah the Hittite!
Q —Are Catholic priests more prone to the sexual abuse of minors than are Protestant ministers or Jewish rabbis or Muslim imams or Christian Science practitioners or Mormon elders or Wiccan witch doctors?
A —Not as far as I know! I don’t have any reliable data on that, only anecdotal data. From what I have read, the problem of sexual abuse of minors is not greater among Catholic priests than among clergy of other religions. If anyone has any hard data on this — one way or the other — I would like to see it. It seems to me that the reason Catholic priests are featured in the news on this dismal topic so much more than clergy of other religions is twofold: (a) The Catholic Church is the Body of Christ. The world crucifies the Body of Christ. It did so in the past and it keeps on doing it. That’s just what the world does! (I use the word “world” in the Joannine sense.) (b) The Catholic Church is perceived as having deep pockets. There is the greater possibility of having a good payday when you sue the Catholic Church.
Q — Is there anything else you want to say?
A — Yes, although I’ve said it before, but it’s always worth saying it again: DESPITE DENIALS FROM VARIOUS AND SUNDRY PERSONS, INCLUDING VARIOUS AND SUNDRY BISHOPS WHO ARE RELUCTANT TO OFFEND THE PRINCIPALITIES AND POWERS IN HIGH PLACES, the sexual abuse of minors by priests is carried out principally (I did not say “exclusively”) by priests who are homosexual. This is complicated by the fact that many bishops (I hope fewer in the present than in the past) have felt it necessary, for the sake of political correctness, to entertain a benign attitude towards homosexuality.

stjos/stvdp: 05.20.2012 - 04


HOW TO BE A MENSCH
“It's easy to be a mensch. You honor your father and your mother. If you’re married, you stay married. You set your kids a good example. You don't lie or cheat or steal. And — every once in a while — you pick up the check!”
                                                                                                                                       --Jane VanDenburgh--

My comment: Recently, I came across the above quote. I said to myself: “Bulletin material!”
If you hang around with Jewish people or if you hang around with people who hang around with Jewish people, you are bound, at some time or another, to hear the word “mensch”. Let me tell you what I know about “mensch”. I first learned the word from my German mother and then again when I was studying German in high school. I was told it meant “human being”, without necessarily designating male or female but — I think — more often, it meant “male human being”. It is sort of like our English word “man”, which usually means “male human being” but can also mean “human being” without regard to gender.
Are you with me so far?
Good!
Let us continue.
“Mensch” found its way into Yiddish, which is a mostly German-based language spoken by Eastern European Jews (but written in Hebrew letters, so as to discourage the goyim) and, in Yiddish, it meant pretty much the same as what it means in German.
Then, somewhere around the 1950s, the Yiddish “mensch” found its way into English. It came to mean something more in English than it means in German / Yiddish. It came to mean something complimentary!
Now, don’t get bored! Keep on reading! I’m coming to the point!
So, if someone (probably Jewish) says to you, “You know what? You’re a mensch!” you should take it as a compliment and you might want to reciprocate: “Thank you! And so are you!”
Very recently, I came across this concise advice (see above) on how to be a “mensch”. I bring it to your attention and recommend that you bring it to the attention of others. Perhaps, in a relatively short time, Girardville will be known as a community of “menschen” — that’s the plural for “mensch”. If that happens, wouldn’t that be nice?
By the way, you don’t have to be Jewish to use this word. (The Jews might have started it, but they forgot to copyright it!) Besides, we goyim have borrowed a lot of good stuff from the Jews — like most of the Bible plus Jesus and Mary and Joseph, plus a few other wonderful persons and things.
Now, go back and read “How to be a Mensch”.
And you might want to memorize it.

WELCOME TO THE COUNTER-REFORMATION, JOSEPH!
The “Joseph” to whom I refer is an eight-year old boy of my acquaintance. For a few years — when Joey was a toddler — his family belonged to my parish (St. Joseph’s - RIP) in Pottsville. The family has since moved to Berks County. Earlier this month, Joseph made his First Holy Communion. His mother told me that Joseph was the only child in his FHC class to receive the Holy Eucharist directly onto his tongue. He had been instructed, along with the other children, to receive It on his hand. However, he insisted that he was going to receive It on the tongue. I commend Joseph’s pastor and FHC catechist for acceding to the boy’s request. Most of all, I commend Joseph for his Eucharistic reverence and for his sense of what is appropriate. It is not easy to be different. The Church is in the early stages of what is sometimes referred to as “the Restoration”. This Restoration is somewhat (not exactly) akin to that period in Church History known as “the Counter-Reformation”. We are trying to get the horse back into the barn after we had unwisely left the barn door open! The leader in this Restoration is none other than our Holy Father, Pope Benedict. Benedict is in good company now. He has Joseph on his side.
THE CANDLE IN FRONT OF THE INFANT OF PRAGUE STATUE (StVdPChurch) burns this week in memory of Sister Susan Osmola, osf, at the request of Sharon Smith.
BACK TO THE CHAPEL! Starting the weekend of 02 / 03 June, the 05:30 pm Saturday Vigil Mass will be in St. Joseph Chapel. We will continue to have the 11:30 am Mass in the upper church. As you may recall, this was the compromise we worked out last year. We hope this arrangement satisfies the majority of “the folks”.

stjos/stvdp: 05.20.2012 - 05


FIRST HOLY COMMUNION

Eight children of our two parishes will be receiving the Lord Jesus for the first time this weekend.
For the first time since I have been in Girardville (July of 2008), we are having two separate FHC events.
We are doing this for two reasons: (a) It was suggested by a lady who is a member of StVdP Parish that we have at least the three StVdP Parish children receive in StVdP Church. She said that it has been a long time since StVdP Church hosted a FHC, and she is correct. This lady claims that she is older than the pastor (although she doesn’t look it) and that, consequently, the pastor has to do what she says! (b) The pastor is here to make as many people happy as he possibly can, without selling out the store!
So, receiving First Holy Communion at the 04:00 pm Mass in St. Vincent dePaul Church on Saturday, 19 May, are the following handsome / beautiful children:

CHARIZMA JENNA HILES
CHLOE RACHEL CHILES
ZANE JOSEPH PENNINGTON

And receiving First Holy Communion at the 11:30 am Mass in St. Joseph Church on Sunday, 20 May, are the following handsome / beautiful children:

BRYCE JOSEPH BELFIORE
MORGAN ELIZABETH BRENNAN
KIRSTEN LEE HEISER
DILLON FRANCIS O’NEILL
JARED ANTHONY TINARI

In next weekend’s bulletin we hope to print photos of the children, plus some additional data about them.

ADDENDUM
The notice in last weekend’s bulletin about the death of Florence Zubris Connell did not include the names of her six great-grandchildren. (We did not have the information at the time we composed the bulletin.) Here are the names: Heidi A. Maurer; Hannah R. Maurer; Haley M. Maurer; Samantha R. Maurer; Johnathan M. Maurer; Dylan P. Maurer.
THE AMERICAN LEGION POST #309 invites us all to participate in the annual Memorial Day Remembrance to be held on 28 May starting at 11:00 am at McDonald’s Funeral Home on West Main Street and ending at the Veterans Memorial at 3rd and Ogden Streets.
I encourage everyone to participate, if at all possible!

A MATTER OF GRAVE CONCERN

If you are not enrolled in the Church Memorial Perpetual Care for St. Joseph Cemetery in Fountain Springs, the annual care fee can be paid now until the end of May.
Annual care (full lot – four graves) is $25.00
Annual care (half lot – two graves) is $20.00
This can be sent to the caretaker:
Joseph Woodward, 1530 Spruce Street, Ashland PA 17921

stjos/stvdp: 05.20.2012 - 06



A PROPER PERSPECTIVE
IN VIEW OF THE PROSPECT OF THE IMPENDING MERGER

I ALMOST ALWAYS READ IN BED BEFORE FALLING ASLEEP. I do so while propped up with three pillows, waiting for Morpheus to sit on my eyelids, at which point, realizing that surrender is the only option, I reach over to switch off the bedside lamp, lay my wooly head on the pillow and say “goodnight” to God. (And, of course, He says “goodnight” to me.)
On a recent Sunday night (I think it was 08 May), one of the pieces of reading material I took to bed with me was that section of the Pottsville Republican in which one finds John Usalis’s column. (For those who don’t know, John is a local boy who made good. He is a member of St. Vincent dePaul Parish and a reporter / columnist for the local newspaper. On most Saturdays, he can be found in StVdP Church, sitting on the southernmost end of the fourth pew during the 04:00 pm Vigil Mass.)
I read something in John’s column that night that disturbed me. He informed his faithful readers that the Milky Way Galaxy, of which our Solar System (including, of course, Planet Earth) is a small part, is on a collision course with the Andromeda Galaxy. And when that collision occurs, there is going to be a monumental re-shuffling of the deck! This collision is scheduled to occur 4.5 billion years from now (give or take a few months, I guess).
When I read that, I said out loud — although no one was around to hear me — “Good grief! What a bummer!” And then I said sarcastically, “Thanks a lot, John! You had to tell me that! Now I’ll never be able to get to sleep!” Then it occurred to me that I really shouldn’t blame John. I’m sure I had come across that particular cosmic forecast in some other venue at some point in the past, but it had never really registered with me. Having lived a life of fun, frolic and frivolity, I just never allowed myself to worry overly much about impending galactic collisions. But, somehow, reading it in John’s column that night, I felt a certain sober concern: What’s to become of us all?
But the more I thought about it — and I admit that this is strange — the more at peace I felt. You see, in this day in which we live, we are beset with mergers and consolidations and rumors about mergers and consolidations of parishes. We live in a state of constant anxiety, fear and trepidation, with a certain amount of depression. Will this building in which our forefathers worshipped (not to mention our foremothers) or that building next to it which housed the parish priests or that building across the street (or across the parking lot) which once rang with the happy voices of children chanting their catechism and their multiplication tables, or the building next to that building, which served as the convent for the holy nuns — will these buildings survive into the unknown future?
And the answer, of course, is NO! None of them will survive! ALL of them will collide with Andromeda! Will there always be two parishes in Girardville and two parishes in Ashland and three parishes in Frackville and a parish in Gordon? Will there always be six parishes in Shenandoah — seven, when you count the Ukrainians — and will there always be at least some semblance of a parish in Lost Creek? And the answer, of course, is NO! But will there be a mega-parish in Fountain Springs? And the answer, of course, is NO! Fountain Springs, Lost Creek, Shenandoah, Gordon, Frackville, Ashland and — yes, even dear little Girardville — will all be compacted into one non-descript speck on the day when we meet Andromeda!
But what about the County of Schuylkill and the Diocese of Allentown? Will they survive? And the answer, of course, is NO! Schuylkill County will be compacted with the Counties of Berks and Northumberland and the Diocese of Allentown with the Dioceses of Harrisburg and of Scranton. It will be the Day of the Ultimate Merger and the Ultimate Consolidation, that Day when the Milky Way kisses Andromeda!
But will anyone or anything survive that Day? Oh yes, of course!
GOD will survive — the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost. They are the Untouchables. They live above and beyond any and all galaxies in the Realm of Their Own Inaccessible Light.
And the Watchers and the Holy Ones will survive, those celestial pure spirits we call collectively “the Angels”. They will survive. They act in the Universe, but are not of the Universe.
Well, that’s all fine and dandy for the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost! And that’s just peachy keen about the Angels! But what about the rest of us? What about us frail children of dust? Will any of us survive?
Oh, yes! Some of us will! I’m not sure how many or what percentage but a good many of us will survive the collisions of the galaxies! Hadn’t you heard? In fact those who survive will have ringside seats, complete with celestial beer and pizza, as we watch the spectacular collision of the Milky Way with Andromeda. It will be quite a show. Lots of Snap, Crackle and Pop! Lights and colors galore, probably such as we had never before witnessed!
Those who will survive to see the Show will be those who did not waste time resenting their bishops, complaining about their parish priests, agonizing about mergers and consolidations or worrying about their real estate but, instead, spent whatever time was left in order to render due worship to God and loving service to their neighbors. I think what we’re talking about here is something called “perspective”.

stjos/stvdp: 05.20.2012 - 07


The Twelve Steps of Narcotics Anonymous

01. We admitted that we were powerless over our addiction, that our lives had become unmanageable.
02. We came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
03. We made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
04. We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
05. We admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
06. We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
07. We humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
08. We made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
09. We made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
10. We continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
11. We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
12. Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to addicts, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

++++++++++

If anyone who struggles with addiction to harmful drugs is interested in attending Narcotics Anonymous meetings in Girardville, please contact Fr. Connolly. Names will be held in strictest confidence. See contact info on top of page one of this bulletin.

stjos/stvdp: 05.20.2012 - 08


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