from the pastor…Fr. McHugh

12th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Theme: Stand Firm in the Faith

When the late Pope John Paul II died, people of different religious affiliations gathered in Rome and in other cities across the world to show respect for their highly-regarded hero. Even people who did not follow his moral teaching or doctrine respected his integrity. Particularly noteworthy was the large number of young people present for his funeral. Pope John Paul II showed respect for all men and women. Today’s scriptural readings deal with integrity and commitment. Despite facing persecution, Jeremiah spoke his message fearlessly. His preaching alienated family and friends. Despite being persecuted, Jeremiah remained faithful to his vocation. Responsorial Psalm 69 reveals that God’s faithful ones suffer persecution often, and many times from close friends. The psalmist is confident that God will respond to those who call upon Him. The Gospel from Matthew is part of Jesus’ missionary discourse. Jesus encourages His disciples to stand up for their faith in time of persecution.

Skin Cancer Treatments

I have begun skin cancer treatments which will be 5 times a week and will last to near the end of July. Please keep me in your prayers. I have the appointments scheduled for the afternoon to avoid inconvenience to the parish as much as possible. The treatments may affect my availability some afternoons and evenings.

Fr. Brosk substituting for Fr. McHugh

Father Steven Brosk will be substituting for me on the weekend of June 24-25 and the daily Masses Monday through Friday of the following week.

Breakfast Canceled for July

Because of all the work involved in the festival, there will not be a breakfast held in July. Please tell any friends who are not parishioners.

Holy Day Attendance

This has been poor the last few years. I will make one more adjustment for the upcoming holy day, the Assumption, on August 15th. I will keep the 5:30 PM Vigil Mass and the 12:00 Noon Mass on the day itself. I will drop the 8:00 AM Mass which has been the weakest and add 5:00 PM on the day itself. If attendance continues to be poor, I will consider reducing the holy day schedule to two Masses, which many parishes have already done.

Providence Place Mass

Fr. McHugh usually offers Mass at Providence Place on the first Tuesday of the month. Because the July 4th holiday falls on the first Tuesday of the month, at the request of Providence Place, Mass will be scheduled for July 11th. The Mass at Fritzingertown will be offered on Thursday, July 20, at 10:15 AM.

Help Wanted

Good Shepherd Parish is looking for lectors and Eucharistic ministers, greeters, and also people to join our Building and Grounds Committee. In June, we’ll be calling for altar servers, so that is something for our young people to think about until then. Also, we will be looking for Faith Formation teachers beginning in the summer. You may contact the parish office if you are interested or complete the coupon and drop it in the collection basket.

VOLUNTEER RESPONSE FORM

Name ______________________________________

Phone Number _______________________________

Area(s) of Interest _____________________________

____________________________________________

~ For a printer-friendly version (PDF) go to the “Downloads” page of our website.

Praying With Scripture

  1. In your situation, how are you challenged to show integrity?
  2. Who are some people you admire for standing up for important values?
  3. Can you think of any areas where you are called upon to stand up for moral values?

Scripture Presentations on YouTube

If you wish to view any of my Scripture presentations on YouTube, simply type in “Fr. Connell McHugh Biblical Narratives” on your computer. Usually a few different ones are available for viewing.

60th Anniversary in Priestly Ministry

Congratulations to Bishop John Martin Dougherty who celebrated his 60th anniversary to the priesthood as did Monsignor William Ward, a Hazleton native from St. Gabriel’s Parish. If you wish to send a card, here are their addresses:

Fr. McHugh’s Update on St. Paul

Two half-hour segments of Fr. McHugh’s update on St. Paul are now available on YouTube. Simply type in “Fr. McHugh Biblical Narratives” on your computer to reach the site. The video presentation treats what is new in Pauline studies. It deals with Paul the person, his epistles, his theology, etc. It discusses why scholars believe Paul’s epistles are more reliable than the Acts of the Apostles in studying Paul’s thoughts.

Quo Vadis Days

Quo Vadis Days for high school young men will take place on June 25–28 at Misericordia University in Dallas. The Quo Vadis Days bring together those who are serious about their faith. The cost is only $40. Online registration began on May 7th. Register at www.scrantonvocations.org. I would be happy to assist any high school boy who is interested.

Presentation of the Gifts

If the Mass is for your intention, you are more than welcome to take up the gifts. For weekday Masses, simply go to the table in the back after the Intercessory Prayer of the Faithful. For weekend Masses, just tell Joe Yamulla that you will bring up the gifts.

Regarding Bulletin Inserts

I ask all parish organizations and individuals to try to use the bulletin rather than an insert for most programs and events we have. Things like the calendar, the financial reports, and the festival are necessary. Other things could just be placed in the regular bulletin which is three pages most times, in relatively small type. I help those who stuff the bulletin almost every week and last week, we had four inserts in addition to the third page of the bulletin. Fortunately, we had 10 people, myself included, who worked on this tedious project, and we finished within a half hour. Sometimes, however, there are only 4 or 5 people and on occasion, 2 or 3. We have to economize in this area. Positively, I do not want more than 2 inserts in any one bulletin, and hopefully, only one. This will be on a first-come, first-served basis. We have driven up our bills for paper to a high degree. Certainly, I am grateful for all the projects initiated by parishioners, but not for the countless inserts which most people do not use.

Bulletin Articles

Please submit all bulletin articles to the parish office by 9:00 AM on Tuesday mornings. Articles submitted after the deadline will be published in the next week’s bulletin.

Fr. Connell's Trivia

  1. Who was the Phillies’ announcer when the team lost 23 straight in 1961? Despite announcing for the Phils for over 30 years, he never had a pennant winner and had double-digit last place teams.
  2. What two pitchers from the 1950 Whiz Kids pennant-winning team for the Phils are still living?

Last Week’s Answers:

  1. Hugh Mulcahy once won 25 games for Hazleton, the Phil’s first farm club, but was nicknamed “Losing Pitcher” because of a career 45-89 record with the Phillies, twice losing 20 or more games. (Question: This pitcher won 25 games for Hazleton in the 1930s when Hazleton was the Phillies’ first farm club. Winning 25 games in a season was the best-ever for a Hazleton high-level Minor League team. After getting the call to pitch for the Phils and their abysmal clubs of the late 1930s, this pitcher was nicknamed “Losing Pitcher,” going 45-89 for his Phils career. He also was the first Major League baseball player inducted into the military during World War II. Can you name this player?)
  2. John Buzhardt won the game before the Phils lost 23 straight in 1961 and won the game that broke the losing streak. (Question: Although this pitcher went 6-18 when the Phillies lost 23 in a row in 1961, he did win the game before the losing streak began and the game that ended the losing streak. Can you name him?)

The Hunchback

Day after day passing out papers
Without close friend or relative
Up and down the city streets
Delivering the news of the day.
Looking at beautiful women
And laughing young children
Knowing that he will never be a part of them.
Night time and a night alone in one room
Of a boarding house
Or a night alone drinking coffee after coffee.
Unable to cut the curtain
Which separates him from humanity.
Doomed to a life of little happiness.
What a tower of strength he is!
He who dares to face reality
Plagued with such a handicap.

~ Rev. Connell A. McHugh

Bulletin Sponsors

We thank recent bulletin sponsors Bonomo’s Carpet and Flooring, JMJ Catholic Radio, Dr. David Portonova, Providence Place, The Knee Center, Tunnessen Radiator Inc., Tunnessen Supply, and long-standing sponsors All Care Home Care, Catholic Match, Patricia Spivak CPA, Sugarloaf Child Care and Valley Pharmacy. The sponsorships do pay for the bulletin covers from Bon Venture which I feel are well done. More sponsors would be needed if Good Shepherd were to receive periodic rebate checks. Again, we thank sponsors new and old.

The Building or Purchase of a Rectory

The building of a rectory on the parish grounds or the purchase of a home will not guarantee a pastor for Good Shepherd and#8211; an increase of vocations will. Some parishioners seem to feel that once we have a pastor’s residence, this will assure us of having a pastor. Certainly, we should continue to collect money for building on site or purchasing a home. We also have to take into account maintaining the residence, which at the current level of collection average, would not be easy. The facts that we only had four seniors participate in the Graduation Mass and no one responding, as of this writing, to the call for altar servers does nothing to foster optimism in the area of vocations.

Taking a Break from Projects

Our parish festival helped pay for the completion of the roof – $23,400, a new tractor – $4,700, a pump replacement – $1,800, and the carpet and railing in the front of the church which ran around $1,000. I do feel we should wait until next spring to get into new projects and build up our finances. Obviously, we will address any emergencies. I think it is now time to concentrate on religious education and spiritual activities.

Remaining to Mass Completion

Please make it a point to stay for the entire Mass unless you have an emergency. Mass is almost always 50 minutes to an hour. Certainly, we can afford to give this time to God.

New Parishioner Coupon

We need people who attend Good Shepherd and are registered in another parish to join ours. Please consider joining Good Shepherd if you are not attached to another parish. Fill out the coupon and you will be contacted. You may also come to the office on weekday mornings to register.

New Parishioner Registration Request

Name _______________________________________

Address _____________________________________

____________________________________________

Telephone ___________________________________

*For a printer-friendly (PDF)version, go to the “Downloads” page of our website.

Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA)

If you or anyone you know wishes to join the Catholic Church, please call the parish office and leave your name and phone number. Adults who have been baptized or not baptized are welcome. We will start the RCIA program any time we have candidates. The program meets every other Wednesday night for one to two hours and at Mass every weekend for a discussion of the readings for that Sunday. We also welcome anyone who wishes to join as a catechist and help with our program which culminates at the Easter Vigil with the administration of the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, and the Eucharist. You need only be a practicing Catholic in good standing to help.

What is a Parish Life Coordinator? Read This and be Informed

What is a Parish Life Coordinator? In recent months, we have heard a great deal about Parish Life Coordinators and the shortage of priests. At a meeting of the deanery with Bishop Bambera at St. John Bosco on June 29th (2015), the bishop explained the role of a Parish Coordinator. Basically, a PLC is in charge of running a parish in the absence of a pastor. The bishop stated that a PLC should have a college degree and be a generally well-educated person. A short period would be necessary for learning the role, probably several months. PLCs would, at this time, basically be appointed to city or suburban parishes that are not at a distance from other ones. A priest would be assigned as a Sacramental Minister to the parish, providing full weekend services and confessions. Another priest would serve as a Moderator helping the PLC. The sacramental priest would likely be one who currently is a chaplain, one involved in school work or a retired priest in reasonable health. The priest may or may not live close to the parish of which he is the Sacramental Minister. This is why, at present, the bishop would not appoint a sacramental priest to a parish that is at a distance from others. A PLC, at present, would not be assigned to a parish a good distance from others since a priest would not be available for emergencies. A PLC would be appointed to parishes that are in reasonable distance of other ones. Priests from other parishes could handle emergencies. This would include anointings and perhaps funerals and interments. The cost of a PLC would not exceed the cost of a pastor, and a PLC would be appointed by the bishop just as pastors are. The bishop stressed that he would not be in favor of a PLC remaining indefinitely at a parish. A parish that had a PLC for a time would ideally go back to having a regular pastor. A parish is not a “PLC parish” for life. Those accepted into the PLC program would not necessarily serve in their own parish. The PLC is not something that should alarm any of us. It is common in dioceses throughout the country. Priests will not become “circuit riders” offering Masses in multiple parishes in Bishop Bambera’s plan.

Cry Room

Please use the cry room if you have babies or small children who cry out during the Mass. Screaming out is distracting to cantors, choir, lectors and the homilist. We do have plenty of space in our cry room.

Baptism Preparation

Parents are required to attend the Baptism preparation class for their first child or if it has been three years since the birth of their last child. If you see that your child will be born shortly after a scheduled class, you may attend during your pregnancy.

Meetings

I would appreciate it if some meetings could be held in the morning since I am at the point now where I just can’t keep running back and forth so frequently to Good Shepherd. I know some meetings do have to be held at night, but not all.

Tables and Chairs

These will no longer be available for parishioners and non-parishioners alike for family reunions, graduations, etc. Over the past summer, people who have borrowed them have returned them in a lesser condition than when they were taken out. Some of the tables were even left out in the rain. While we don’t give out our better tables and chairs, we still use the ones we have given out for larger gatherings. We are sorry, but due to the lack of care for our tables and chairs by a few, they no longer will be given out. I looked at the way our equipment was returned at the request of the janitorial staff and Buildings and Grounds personnel and could clearly see how the tables, especially, suffered considerable damage.

Bulletin Sponsors

We thank those who currently are sponsoring our parish bulletin: All Care Home Care, Booty’s Place, CatholicMatch.com, Patricia Spivak CPA, Sugarloaf Child Care, The Knee Center, and Valley Pharmacy. Currently, sponsorships pay for the bulletin covers. If we had a greater number of sponsors, the parish would receive rebate checks as well. If you are interested in advertising in our bulletin, please call Karen Owens at 1-800-364-0684, extension 92. The number of bulletin advertisers is low considering our parish membership.

Eulogies at Funerals

Since we have had involvement in 20 or more funerals to date, counting interments, and have had eulogies at approximately 40 to 50 percent of the Masses, now is a good time to comment on eulogies. The Church, in the past, has had a long-standing prohibition of giving eulogies at funerals. The Order of Christian Funerals states, “A brief homily based on the readings should always be given at the funeral liturgy, but never any kind of eulogy.” The homilist is to keep in mind the identity of the deceased, the circumstances of death and the grief of the family. The homilist is to preach on the saving mystery of Christ’s death. Today, the Church allows a family member or friend to speak on behalf of the deceased before the final commendation begins. The words are to be brief, highlighting an aspect of the deceased’s life of faith. If there is a desire for a lengthy eulogy or sharing of memories, this should take place at the funeral vigil and not in church. Priests have the right to read ahead of time the text and outline of any eulogy and make changes in length and content when necessary.

To Advertise in Good Shepherd Bulletin

Please call (800) 364-0684, extension 92. We are grateful for those who are already advertising.

Funeral and Wedding Costs

We will follow the Diocesan recommended fee of $300 for both funerals and weddings. Baptisms remain a free-will offering of your choice.

Lehigh Valley Hospital – Hazleton

If you are a member of Good Shepherd Parish and are hospitalized at Lehigh Valley Hospital – Hazleton, please list your parish as Good Shepherd. Quite a few of Good Shepherd parishioners claim as their parish one that has been closed. Some people from Good Shepherd and other parishes are not visited because their parish priests, myself included, do not think to look under closed parishes for their own parishioners, and understandably so. A way to assure that you will be visited, if you so desire, is to notify the parish office.