Very Reverend John D. Byrnes, JV, JCL
We celebrate “Catholic Schools Week” this week from January 26 to February 1. This week’s edition of our Diocesan television program PROCLAIM! (Sunday mornings at 10:30 AM ABC 23) was taped on location from our St. Michael School! Look for interviews with me and our students as we celebrate and present our daily life at school! You can also access PROCLAIM! anytime on Facebook or the Diocesan website www.dioceseaj.org.
*I especially encourage our young parents (of newborns to kindergarten ) to begin looking at our St. Michael School Program and see why it is the best choice for your son or daughter’s education. I also encourage our parents of those in public school from Kindergarten to Fourth Grade to consider a transfer to St. Michael! I know that you will like what you see…… and, with financial aid, St. Michael School could be very affordable for your growing family.
*We will be having a “Kindergarten Visitation Day” on Wednesday, January 29th. All children who will be five years of age by August 31, 2020 are welcome to attend. Please contact the school office @ 472-9117 to register so that a personal invitation can be sent to all prospective students.
*Our Catholic Schools Week Mass will be at the special time of 10:00 AM this Thursday January 30. I invite all parents and grandparents to our Mass, if your schedule permits.
*The gift of a Catholic education is a priceless, firm foundation! I am personally grateful for my own Catholic education at the former St. Aloysius (now All Saints) School in Cresson, and Bishop Carroll High School. I am grateful to many families for your sacrifice and willingness to provide a quality Catholic education for your children and teenagers in this difficult economy. I thank all school families who go out of their way to not only contribute to our parish in the weekly collection, but participate so well in our school fundraisers. St. Michael School is special. We are one of the few parish-based Catholic Schools in the Diocese.
*I am committed to keeping our school OPEN and to providing our children with the best Catholic education, both academic and spiritual, offered anywhere. I thank our principal, Mrs. Renee Phister, for her many hours of love and hard work in strengthening our school. There is a wonderful, faith –filled atmosphere at St. Michael School which is conducive to the discipline of academics. I am grateful to so many of our young people in 4th, 5th , 6th , 7th and 8th Grade who take time to faithfully serve our daily 7:30 AM Mass before school. I have found that many of our students take their faith and their academics seriously. They are true young leaders in our parish. It is my hope that more families in our parish would value and utilize these programs.
*Thank you to all who support our Bingo. Please support our Bingo! It provides essential funding for our school programs!!
*We are also blessed to be part of high school/college prep at Bishop Carroll Catholic High School, Ebensburg. Several of our young parishioners also attend Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic High School, Altoona. Bishop Carroll Catholic High School will hold an Open House for parents and students on Wednesday, January 29 from 6-7:30 PM. A financial aid meeting will follow from 7-8 PM in the cafeteria. All new students will be eligible for a drawing for a $250 scholarship. Parents can fill out a ticket at the door and the drawing will be held at the end of the financial aid meeting. You must be present to win. Representatives from Saint Francis University and Mount Aloysius College will also be on hand to explain the financial and educational advantages for attending Bishop Carroll and continuing on to one of these institutions. For more information, please call the school at 472-7500 extension 105 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
February 1-2 Blessing of Throats - Deacon Rick and I will offer the traditional individual Blessing of Throats in commemoration of the feast of St. Blaise on the weekend of February 1- 2 following all Masses. We will follow the French custom and enjoy a piece of hard candy after the blessing….in thanks to God for the gift of taste, breath and speech!
February 23- The Winter Parish Council Meeting has been rescheduled for Sunday, February 23 at 6:30 PM in the basilica hall. All parishioners are welcome to attend! All Council members and Committee Chairs are to attend. Committee Chairpersons will offer a brief report on their committee’s work and projects. In this way, we see all that is happening in our parish and work in an orderly way.
LENT 2020 -Arise Together in Christ - As we begin 2020, we are very much in need of an opportunity for spiritual and pastoral renewal in our parish and diocese. What more could we desire in our diocese than parishioners with a greater understanding of our faith and a stronger relationship with the Lord, participating more fully in parish life and inviting others to join in? To accomplish this, Bishop Mark has requested our participation in Arise Together in Christ.
We are currently forming Arise prayer groups for Lent. We will also need to order the books for the program. If you are considering a team please pray on it and contact me or the Parish Office. As for those who have signed up, we will be contacting you shortly to give further instructions. Please consider being part of an Arise team or creating your own prayer team!” ~Thank You, Bob Chumrik, Arise Coordinator for Saint Michael the Archangel. 505-2735
A message from the Parish Finance Council: A few months ago, we updated you on our budget and plans to practice fiscal conservancy by requesting sponsorship of several items. We are overwhelmed with the generosity of several anonymous parishioners – all of our requests were filled! This is a wonderful way to take care of the expenses of the parish and a great example of stewardship by those donors. Again, it is only with the parishioners’ continued support that we can be fiscally sound. If you are able to sponsor any amount of the following items, please send your donation into the parish office. Thank you!
▪ Website annual fee $40
▪ Annual Easter palm order $280
▪ Copy machine monthly bill $236
▪ Organ annual maintenance fee $375
▪ Organ repair initial fee $850
Various candles that we use throughout the year:
▪ One set of Advent wreath candles $72
▪ Box of six floor candles $89
▪ Box of 12 low back altar candles $80
▪ Easter Vigil candles $48
In addition to our regular monthly bills, in the past month, the basilica has paid:
➢ $10,000 toward our current diocesan assessments of $97,000
➢ $633 to repair the church/rectory boiler
➢ $29,554 for sidewalk repaving at the school
➢ $2,903 for snow/ice removal for December
➢ $727 quarterly bill to Loretto Borough for water/sewer
Thank you for your donations that enable us to continue to pay these bills!