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Ss. Peter and Paul Catholic Church

Mass Times

Saturday Vigil: 5:00 p.m.
Sunday: 8:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m.
Holy Days: To be announced
Sacrament of Reconciliation
Saturday: 4:00 - 4:45 p.m.

Mass times on holy days vary and are announced in the bulletin.

Message from The Diocese:

All Hallows’ Eve and St. Nicholas

Almost every day for the last several weeks, I have accompanied Bishop Braxton on his pastoral visits to our Catholic elementary and secondary schools. I have watched with appreciation as he interacts with ease with the students of all ages and graciously expresses gratitude for the good work of the teachers. He is very much at ease patiently answering the students’ questions which range from “please explain Purgatory” to “Why can’t women become priests” to “why have some priests harmed children”.

On Tuesday, while visiting Our Lady Queen of Peace School there was a discussion about All Hollow’s Eve, All Saints’ Day, and All Souls Day during his visit with the fifth and sixth graders. The Bishop was pleased that some of the students knew that the word Halloween was originally All Hollow’s Eve, the day before All Saints Day and that in the past many Catholic children dressed as saints and not as ghosts, goblins and witches on that night.

In a passing remark the Bishop asked the students if they knew who St. Nicholas was and what his name has been changed to in popular culture. Several said that his name had been changed to Santa Claus. Then the Bishop explained that St. Nicholas was a Catholic Bishop of Myra in Asia Minor, who, according to tradition, loved children and gave them gifts, especially those who were poor.  He said just as All Hollows’ Eve was gradually changed to Halloween, so also the story of the good works of St. Nicholas was gradually changed into the story of Santa Claus, a jolly elf bringing gifts down the chimney to children. The Bishop did NOT make these comments to small children in the lower grades. He was speaking to fifth and sixth graders, who already knew the true story of St. Nicholas.

I was personally present in the classroom and I know exactly what the Bishop said and the context in which it was said.  This is why I was quite surprised to learn that somehow some individuals incorrectly thought the Bishop was going around the school telling little children that there is no Santa Claus.  This is simply not true! This complete misunderstanding led to a few calls and expressions of disappointment, even anger that had nothing whatsoever to do with what the Bishop actually said. Bishop Braxton explained to me that when he is speaking to young children about the true meaning of Christmas for a Catholic, he always focus on the birth of Jesus Christ and the need for Him to be born anew each day in the hearts of us all.

Jonathan Birdsong

Superintendent of Schools

Message from The Bishop

Dear People of God:

          As you know, I am in Baltimore for the autumn meeting of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. On Sunday, I participated in the meeting of the Committee for the Protection of Children and Young People during which we discussed a number of issues critical to the current crisis. The  Bishops spent yesterday primarily in prayer and listening to lay women and men expressing their concerns for those who have been abused by members of the clergy and their dissatisfaction with the way some Bishops have responded to this abuse. Our Monday session began with the unexpected announcement by Cardinal DiNardo, our Conference President, informing us that the Holy See has asked that we delay the vote on the Standards of Episcopal Conduct and the Special Commission for Review of Complaints Against Bishops for Violations of the Standards of Episcopal Conduct. Most of the Bishop were surprised and disappointed by this instruction from the Holy See. As a result, a decision was made that we should at least discuss these documents and vote on them at a later date.

          The reason for the Holy See’s request for the delay was not because of any expressed objection to the contents of these proposed documents. Rather, it was because the Holy Father wanted the Bishops of the United States to wait until after the February meeting that he has called for Presidents of Episcopal Conferences from around the world. This meeting will address the same issues and perhaps make additional proposals. The delay will make sure that the policies of the Episcopal Conferences of each country are consistent and have the “recognitio” (or approval) of the Holy See.

          I am aware it is possible that many people may think that this is an intentional delay without a serious reason. However, it might be helpful to recall that even though many people speak of the “American Church” or the “Australian Church”, or the “Nigerian Church”, these expressions are not exactly correct. The correct expression would be the “Catholic Church in the United States”, the “Catholic Church in Australia”, or the “Catholic Church in Nigeria”. Strictly speaking, there is no American Church. There is one universal Catholic Church and its center is in Rome where St. Peter and St. Paul were martyred and where St. Peter’s Successor leads the worldwide Catholic Church as the Bishop of Rome.

          I am confident that even with this delay the Bishops will approve an appropriate version of these documents.

          I am attaching a news article concerning this matter which you may find helpful. (Please click on underlined words to download the news article.)

          Please continue to remember me and my fellow Bishops in your prayers.

 

Yours in Christ,.

The Most Reverend Edward K. Braxton, Ph.D., S.T.D.

Bishop of Belleville

Job Openings!

Pastoral Associate for Adult Faith Formation 

This person, in conjunction with an Adult Faith Formation Commission, will develop and coordinate adult education and faith formation opportunities for adults and catechists in the parish. The nature of this position requires availability for frequent evening and weekend work and offers flexible work hours. Master degree in theology or related field preferred. 25-30 hours/week, benefits available at 30 hours.

 

Part-Time Maintenance Position 

Primary responsibility is to maintain and repair the Church and Cemetery facilities and grounds. Will also perform custodial work as needed.

 

Send resumes to Emily Kimutis, Business Manager pbm@ssppcc.org

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