It has been awhile since I posted, although Julie Henry has done an outstanding job of keeping us informed through this web site as well as the Seton Chronicles and the bulletin board in church. This first half of 2015 has seen a hard Winter, a good Lent, a wonderful Easter season and a fast moving Summer. We welcomed Jared Orth into the Church at the Easter Vigil, and he and his family are becoming more actively involved (you may see them at times serving as Greeters at Mass). Two awesome groups of young people made their First Holy Communions in the Easter Season. On June 13th, we witnessed the Ordination to the Permanent Diaconate of Jeff Cieslewicz. Jeff is the first vocation to Holy Orders from our young parish. We hosted a reception for those attending the 4:00 am Mass on the day of his Mass of Thanksgiving. There were three others ordained as Deacons that day. A week later the Diocese of Greensburg ordained three new priests to serve God’s people. Soon after, priest assignments came out, and we were spared once again (thank God). And then on July 13th the Diocese of Greensburg ordained and installed her Fifth Bishop – Bishop Edward Charles Malesic. We look forward to his ministry and leadership in our midst in the years to come.
There will be an opportunity to meet the new bishop locally on Tuesday, August 18th, at a 7:00 pm Mass at Saint Agnes Church followed by a reception for all in attendance with an opportunity to say hello. Mark you calendars and plan on joining us that evening for a great time.
If you check out your Greensburg Tribune Review or Trib Live on the web, you will find and article that ran on Thursday, December 11th regarding an exhibit of “Mary Mother of God” at the new Diocesan Hertitage Center at the Bishop Connare Center on Route 30 East of Greensburg. There is an article in this week’s CATHOLIC ACCENT. This is the first exhibit to be held at the new Heritage Center.
I mention this for a very good reason. Featured in the Trib article is a picture of one of the Center’s members adjusting OUR picture of the Madonna and Child from the church (the Father McGuire painting). That piece of artwork, plus a more contemporary print of Madonna and Child that I own, are on exhibit in Greensburg through February.
The exhibit is open every Saturday (except Dec. 27) until February 14 from 10:00 am till Noon and in the afternoon from 1:00 to 3:00 pm, and is free of charge. There are over 60 items from around the Diocese on exhibit. All are welcome to view this exhibit honoring Mary, and to see “our” painting among this collection.
Father Rick called me this afternoon to remind me that today, October 30th marks the sixth anniversary of my arrival in North Huntingdon as pastor of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish. He had a funeral that morning and then departed for his new adventure in Mount Pleasant and I arrived in the afternoon with my stuff, beginning the job of unpacking. It does seem like yesterday, and yet it seems like I have been here forever (in the very best sense possible). You have made me very welcome and I feel at home, and I am truly grateful and love you very much. For that I am eternally grateful. God’s blessings upon all of you!
On Sunday, September 21st, our parish family was truly blessed. In addition to the Sunday worship where Christ is present and we are enriched and fed in Word and Sacrament, we also were priviledged to welcome into our Family of Faith five youngsters whose parents and family brought them to us for Initiation in the Sacrament of Baptism. Following the 11:00 am Mass, we baptized Nola Ryan Bechtold, Stella Mae Flore, Alexander Michael Phillips, Samantha Raeann Stough and Sean Patrick Whalen. It was a glorious celebration for those families as well as for the Church, and is an indication of the vitality of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish. We welcome those youngsters and congratulate their parents and families. It also saw the inauguration of our gratitude for the gift of life that these parents have provided for society and the Church in the presentation of a beautiful red rose to the Moms and Dads in appreciation for their child.
Later that afternoon, at Blessed Sacrament Cathedral in Greensburg, a ceremony honoring 28 members from the entire Diocese of Greensburg was held by Bishop Lawrence Brandt. Two distinct awards were presented in recognition of service and commitment to the work of the Church, both in the Diocese as well as in the parish. Our parish was honored to have three of our parishioners recognized at this event, details of which can be found in the ACCENT and pictures of which can be found on the Diocesan Web Site.
JOAN YUHAS has awarded the Bishop’s MEDAL OF HONOR in recognition of meritorious service to the parish and the Church. Joan helps us as an associate organist as well as organist for the Resurrection Choir and is deeply involved in our Christian Mothers as well as the parish life. Her dedicated service and her quiet and humble spirirt have brought blessing to many, and now brings blessing and honor to our parish family. We congratulate Joan on this honor, and was glad that her husband Charles and their children were able to be present. They represented us well.
Wendy and Keith Staso were also recognized and honored by Bishop Brandt with an invitation to be invested into the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulhre of Jerusalem as a Knight and a Lady of the Order. The Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem is a chivalric order of laity and clergy that traces its roots back to the First Crusade in 1099. The Order was approved by Pope Callistus II in 1122, establishing members as a lay religious community with specific responsibilities of supporting the Latin rite Patriarch of Jerusalem and supporting the Christian presence in the Holy Land through prayer and financial assistance. Longtime members of our parish, Wendy and Keith served as co-chairs for the parish of the recent Today’s Challenge/Tomorrow’s Hope Campaign. We congratulate them on this distinctive recognition and the honor that it brings to the parish family.
Pulling up to the church on Monday for the funeral Mass for Jennie Babicz I saw a gentleman standing in the shade by the outdoor bell. He spoke and said that he was from Whitiker and was here for the funeral Mass and that he was enjoying the beautiful grounds of our church. I thanked him and welcomed him. I remembered the coffee and donuts served in our center circle just the day before, and then I got thinking,
When we speak of the wonderful parish of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, we usually refer to the good people or the great worship space and Mack hall. But our church has another place of beauty and prayer on our grounds, especially in Mary’s Garden. A project of the Christian Mothers with the assistance of other dedicated men and women who keep the place looking great, Mary’s Garden is a gem. Recently the crew weeded and mulched and planted and trimmed and the Garden looks particularly beautiful. Check it out. And visit Mary’s Garden, our statue of our patron, Elizabeth Seton and even our somewhat hidden cross and bell. We have much to be proud of and many to be grateful to for this beauty, most especially our Creator.
From June 21 through July 4,Catholics throughout this nation will commemorate the annual Fortnight for Freedom (this is the third year). This period of prayer, fasting and advocacy is encouraged by the United States Bishops and is a time for faithful Americans to respond to the many threats to religious liberty our country currently faces. The theme for this year is the “Freedom to Serve”, which highlights the good that Catholic works do for the poor.
For further information on the Fortnight for Freedom and suggestions on what can be done on behalf of our religious libertiesd, you can visit http://www.fortnight4freedom.org or check out our Diocesan web site at http://www.dioceseofgreensburg,org. Our nation was founded on the principles of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, and religious liberty was/is foundational.
Death knows no age. This was evident this week as we buried from our parish three parishioners of varying ages ranging from 18 through 91.
On Tuesday, June 17th, we buried MATTHEW KELLERMANN, age 18, the son of Gus and Lisa Kellermann (who cantors and plays the cello at times in our church) and his two younger brothers Shaun and Logan. Matt had been killed in a tragic traffic accident on Route 30 the previous Friday afternoon. Matt was a recent graduate of McKeesport High School. The death of one so young and under such tragic circumstances is difficult, so we ask your special prayers for his family, especially Mom and Dad.
On Friday evening, June 20th, a Blessing Service was held at the Shirley Funeral Home for RICHARD J. HYDAK, SR., age 79, who had died on Tuesday. Richard was a regular at Mass, sitting on the Tabernacle side in the back. He is survived by daughters Sharron Prettiman and Lauren Lochner and son, Richard, Jr. Richard had five grandchildren and three greatgrandchildren, as well as a sister. Many of our parishioners were in attendance at the Service.
And on Monday, June 23rd, a Funeral Mass will be offered for JENNIE BABICZ, age 91, who was formerly from here but was living with her son in Harrisburg. Her son, Francis and daughter Claudia and two grandchildren will mourn her passing. We are glad to welcome her home for her Funeral Mass.
MAY THEY REST IN PEACE.
Bishop Lawrence E. Brandt of the Diocese of Greensburg celebrated the Sacrament of Confirmation at Saint Regis Church in Trafford on Thursday, May 15th, for candidates from both Saint Regis as well as from our parish of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton. Despite the heavy rains of the evening, the Spirit of God was alive and present at this celebration. There were twenty-six young women and men from our parish who were confirmed. They are: Shelby Baker + Brianna Coulson + Ricco Ciccarelli + Nathaniel Fetsick + Lukas Finn + Hanna Geissler + Isabella Harshman + Carlin Jacob + Shaun Kellerman + Taylor Marie Krnaich + Alex Legnine + Nicholas Mandella + Jordan Mastalerz + Kylie Mihalov + Nolan Mullen + Hanna Nelson + Carissa Novotny + Joseph Rush + Natalie Shuster + Rachel Sullivan + Conor Thornton + Josephine Toth + Jenna Uziel + Trey Wilson + Seth Yanosko + Kayla Young. Our very special congratulations and prayers go out to these newly confirmed and to their families. We are blessed to have them as fully initiated members of the Church of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton.
In early May our parish celebrated the First Holy Communion of twenty-seven youngsters from our parish in two separate celebrations. Both Masses were celebrated on Saturday mornings at 11:00 am, when family and friends gathered to pray for and with our candidates for this Sacrament and welcome them to the Table of the Lord. The celebrations were glorious and the youngsters excited.
On Saturday, May 3rd, the following young men and women received Eucharist: Vincenzo Burton Bain * Mackenzie Brokaw * Luke Denny * Andrew Diana * Dustin Greives * Troy Dennis Horvath * Nicholas Legnine * Declan McCabe * Liliana Montore * Noah Mulac * Jake Mumpower * Jennifer Novak * Fralley Panzo * Cole Sullivan.
On Saturday, May 10th, the following young women and men received Eucharist: Keira King * Kylie Ellen Makay * Camryn McMullen-Jones * Matthew Stanley Nelson * Dominic Nicotero * Owen Orth * Alina Ragan * Antonio Rothrauff * Dominic Schopp * Jake Sincak * Cheyenne Starr * Paige Tokay * Aaron Anthony Varrati.
We are so proud of all of these youngsters and look forward to having them join us often at the Table of the Lord. CONGRATULATIONS! Look for the group photos once we get them from the photographer.
I am always very proud to be very proud of the good people, their gifts, and the generous spirit of this parish of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton. I thought that I would call those moments SETON PROUD!
There is an old saying that “Cleanliness is next to Godliness”. If that is the case, then we are truly blest because of a hard working group of women and one gentleman who gathered on Tuesday morning with buckets and rags and lots of Murphy’s Oil Soap to clean the pews in church. It has been a while since they were washed down. But the great job and the “elbow grease” expended will beautify the church and help us, in our “cleanliness” to be closer to God. To these ladies and gentleman, thank you. We are SETON PROUD!
From Ash Wednesday through Good Friday a great group of volunteers worked to make our Lenten Fish Dinners another wonderful success. Over one hundred volunteer workers and many bakers of dessert items, under the leadership of Debbie Pazohoski and Julie McNamara, made this another outstanding year. On Sunday we shared a “non-fish” meal with many of them to show our appreciation … and to those who supported the cause but could not be there – great thanks! We are SETON PROUD!
And I may have mentioned this before – while we have yet to reach our parish goal for the 2014 DLA, we have surpassed our Diocesan goal … the first time in a number of years. For those who have given and for those yet to make their gift or pledge, heartfelt thanks. We are SETON PROUD!