Parish Mission

October 21, 2018

 

 

PARISH MISSION: I am happy to welcome the Reverend Monsignor Roger Statnick, a retired Diocese of Greensburg “mover and shaker” for our parish mission. His theme will be “Rediscovering Our Roots.” Don’t miss this opportunity to enrich your faith! In addition to preaching most of the Masses this weekend (which I’m sure left you hungry for more!) Msgr. Statnick will give talks at 6:30pm on Monday and Wednesday at Saint John the Evangelist Church and at 9am on Tuesday at Saint Aloysius Gonzaga Church (he will also be the cele-brant for the 8:30 Mass immediately preceding.) Since Msgr. Statnick has a teaching commitment on Tuesday evenings it seemed a perfect opportunity to offer a day-time session that day, especially for those who do not like to go out after dark lthough this will not be a repeat episode and ALL who can are welcome/encouraged to at-tend). Our Pastoral Council will host a reception after the final session Wednesday evening.

 

 

COVER PHOTO: Last weekend two very special milestones were celebrated in Our Lady, Queen of the Yough Catholic Community.

 

Fr. John Bednarik, a Connellsville native who grew up as a Saint Rita parishioner, celebrated the 50th anniversary of his ordination on Saturday. Family and friends joined the regular 4pm crowd for a beautiful Mass. The famed Saint Rita choir gladly chose to forgo their usual 8am Sunday time slot, adding to the solemnity of the occasion. Following Mass all were invited to Bucci Hall to personally congratulate the good father at a reception graciously hosted by Rita and the Ritettes (i.e. the Christian Mothers). Due to the seemingly ceaseless rain the work on the exterior of the hall is behind schedule, thus the front entrance was unavailable. But to their credit the parishioners once again gave evidence of their ability to adjust to any curve balls thrown their way, by happily using the side entrance.

 

Fr. Bednarik, a Capuchin Friar, was ordained on 19 October 1968 in Pittsburgh and the next day celebrated his Mass of Thanksgiving (“First Mass” in common - but incorrect - parlance; a priest’s First Mass is his ordination Mass) at Saint Rita.

 

A few days prior to Fr. Bednarik’s ordination, on 14 October 1968, lifelong Immaculate Conception parishioner Kathleen “Polly” Trump celebrated her 54th birth-day. That would NOT be anything worth noting EXCEPT that last Sunday I visited Polly at her home to give her communion on her LATEST birthday. If math “ain’t yo thang” let me break that down for you; 54+50=104. Yes, believe it or not, that fine lady who is sharing the cover with Fr. John is ONE HUNDRED FOUR years old!

 

A few days prior to Fr. Bednarik’s ordination, on 14 October 1968, lifelong Immaculate Conception parishioner Kathleen “Polly” Trump celebrated her 54th birth-day. That would NOT be anything worth noting EXCEPT that last Sunday I visited Polly at her home to give her communion on her LATEST birthday. If math “ain’t yo thang” let me break that down for you; 54+50=104. Yes, believe it or not, that fine lady who is sharing the cover with Fr. John is ONE HUNDRED FOUR years old!

 

In a “Fr. Dan” moment (he always thinks of ways to make people feel special!) I was inspired at 9:30 Mass at IC to have the congregation sing “Happy Birthday” to Polly and video the scene with my iPhone. I made sure to take my laptop with me on my visit and shared the video with Polly and her family. She was THRILLED and wants everyone to know how much she appreciates being remembered. Well past her 101st birthday she was regularly at 6pm Mass, but has grown some-what weaker in the last years and is no longer able to join us. Even still, that morning she had told her family that she wanted to “get up and go to Mass” for her birthday. I was honoured to bring the Lord and the wishes of her faith community to her so that she was able to still feel connected with us!

 

SNARK ALERT ... DON'T READ IF SNARKY COMMENTS OFFEND! I have been informed that it is "all over town" that Saint Rita Church is closing. Furthermore I have been informed that this story is spreading like wildfire because "Fr. Bob put it in 'black and white' in the bulletin." A fortnight back we began the publication of monthly income/expense statements for the four parishes. My comments explaining this new bulletin feature were COMPLETELY (DELIBERATELY?) misread by some. OR are some just lacking in their ability to comprehend the written English language? I am exploring the possibility of offering literacy classes in the community so that my words in the future will NOT be misunderstood.

 

All snark aside, I have to wonder who would want to become a priest these days when your EVERY word, your EVERY action is TWISTED in order to advance some petty parochial agenda ...

 

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