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Pope: May church be life-giving mother, not power-hungry 'business'

December 22, 2014

By Carol Glatz
Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A church concerned with power and self-interest ends up looking like a business rather than what it is called to be: a generous mother open to the surprise and life-giving miracle of the Holy Spirit. Pope Francis said.

"The church is mother and it becomes a mother only when she is open to the newness of God, to the power of the Spirit," he said Dec. 19 at his morning Mass in the Domus Sanctae Marthae.

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Catholic Speaker Bryan Mercier coming to St. Theresa

December 22, 2014

TRUMBULL--ATTENTION Young Adults Married & Single - Catholic Speaker and Retreat Leader Bryan Mercier is coming to St. Theresa Church, Main St., Trumbull on Thurs., Jan. 8 at 6:15pm to discuss The Pathway to Love: How to find and keep Happily ever After. This talk will encompass dating, marriage, and sexuality in the Catholic Church. Open to all! Refreshments served. For info email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

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Celebrating Christmas

December 22, 2014

View photos from last night's "White Christmas" Concert at St. Augustine Cathedral.

The concert featured performances by Italian Tenor Luciano Lamonarca, pop singer Daniela Fiorentino, guitarist; The Cathedral Parish Chris Remediani, the duo of Balint/Mikhailoff, and an intermission by comedian Regina DeCicco.

Internationally-acclaimed singer, music producer, musician and actor Lee Curreri, star of the motion picture and television series ³Fame,² who had the part of Bruno Martelli, flew in from Los Angeles to make an appearance.

Guest of honor for the evening was Bishop Frank J. Caggiano, who is also a member of the Religious Advisory Board of the Saint Pio

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A Tuneful, Off-Beat Christmas Music List

December 20, 2014

Published in

“In spite of all that can be said against our age, what a moment to be alive in!” So said Australian poet and Catholic convert James McAuley in 1957. McAuley had primarily in mind magazine-publishing – his own periodical Quadrant, then a quarterly, had just been launched – but his sentence applies as much, if not more, to the bewildering range of music recordings (many gratis) which the Internet has made available for us, almost sixty years later.

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Newtown remembered at Cathedral Academy

December 18, 2014

BRIDGEPORT—“Violence is overcome day by day, choice by choice, person by person,” declared the opening of the prayer service at the Cathedral Academy Upper School. The school community had gathered on December 16 to remember the 26 victims of Newtown Elementary School.

The prayer service was the centerpiece of 26 Acts of Kindness taking place at the school during December and early January. “We followed the lead of Notre Dame High School’s observance, modifying it for younger students,” explains Principal Larry DiPalma, who had been on the staff of Notre Dame at the time of the shootings.

View slideshow of prayer service

Read a transcript of the prayer

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Forming Intentional Disciples

December 17, 2014


“We can’t get to the Lord without the Church, but the Church and Sacred Scripture only makes sense if we have a relationship with Jesus Christ,” says Father Peter Towsley, vicar for evangelization of the Diocese of Bridgeport.

To enrich that personal relationship with Jesus Christ and empower parishes to be vibrant places of liturgical worship and fellowship, form missionary disciples, and enable schools to be places where administration, staff and students are living witnesses of Christ’s lay faithful, the Diocese of Bridgeport is sponsoring a “Forming Intentional Disciples!” workshop.

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CHRISTMAS DAY TELEVISED MASS Dec. 25 with Fr. Edward L. Beck, C.P., Music Ministry Choir with Special Musical Guest, Vanessa Williams. Music Selections: “What Child is This”, “O Come, All Ye Faithful”, “A Christmas Gloria”, “The Innkeeper Song”, “Go Tell it on the Mountain”, “Star Bright”, “Silent Night”, “Joy to the World”. Lector: Wendell Laurent. WLNY, Channel 10/55 at 9am; WWOR Channel 9 at 8am; Salt and Light TV, Check your local listings.

FEAST OF THE HOLY FAMILY, Remembering the Holy Innocents at St. Ann Church, 481 Brewster St., Bridgeport on Sun., Dec. 28 at 10:30am Mass. Open to all who have suffered the loss of a child.  Join with us to light a candle to commemorate your child who has gone before us in faith. For info or questions contact the Respect Life Ministry for the Diocese of Bridgeport at (203) 416-1445 or

- Ever wonder what seminary is?  You may be surprised.  Our diocesan seminary is a place of joy, brotherhood, prayer and discernment.  Come be our guest for the day and spend some time praying about your vocation.  The best 12 hours you'll spend to know God's will for your life!  Held Jan. 3 from 9am-9pm at St. John Fisher Seminary Residence, 894 Newfield Ave., Stamford.  For questions or info email Allison McCarthy in the Vocation Office at (203) 322-5331 or

sponsored by St. Theresa and St. Catherine chapters of Knights of Columbus for ages 9-14 held Sun., Jan. 4 from 9am-Noon at St. Joseph High School, 2320 Huntington Turnpike, Trumbull. Click here to register. For info call (203) 610-1131.

CURSILLO ULTREYA to be held Jan. 5 at St. James Parish in Stratford at 7pm.  For info email Looking for a deeper relationship with God? Grow in faith? What is Cursillo? Find out at Cursillo of Fairfield County, Diocese of Bridgeport

TEENS & ADULTS!  American Sign Language Classes will be offered at Our Lady Of Peace Parish, Stratford. Sign up for Tuesday (Youth Sign Language) starting Jan. 6 from 7-830pm for 8 weeks. $150pp plus class book (purchased thru Sign up for Thursday (Adult Sign Language) starting Jan. 9 from 7-9pm for 10 weeks. $200pp plus class book (purchased thru Contact: Dawn (

is coming to St. Theresa Church, Main St., Trumbull on Thurs., Jan. 8 at 6:15pm to discuss The Pathway to Love: How to find and keep Happily ever After. This talk will encompass dating, marriage, and sexuality in the Catholic Church. This event is open to all Young Adults single or married. Light refreshments served.  For info email

BISHOP CAGGIANO WILL DELIVER LECTURE at St. Luke Church, 49 Turkey Hill Rd. North, Westport on Jan. 9 at 7:30pm in the Community Room. The Most Reverend Bishop Frank J. Caggiano will deliver the third of the First Friday Lecture Series “The Lord’s Prayer”.  The lecture will be preceded by wine and cheese reception at 7pm.  All are welcome. For info email

"COME & SEE" VOCATIONS MASS - The Secular Franciscan Holy Spirit Fraternity invites everyone to St. Emery’s Church, 838 Kings Hwy. East, Fairfield, on Sat., Jan. 10 at 9:30am. Msgr. Ernest Esposito will celebrate a Mass followed with a social and meeting in the Church Hall.  “Come and See” if you are being called to a vocation in the Secular Franciscan Order.  All are welcome!  For info call (203)-255-8801.

held on Jan. 10, 2015 from 2-4pm at Trinity Catholic High School in Stamford. All persons must have a ticket to enter at the door! All adult chaperones must be virtus trained and background checked and registered by January 1st. No adults will be accepted at the door who are not pre-cleared chaperones. This is a youth session, only adults who are chaperoning will have clearance. All youth and adults who have attended a previous session, do not need to fill out another liability form. We will have them on record at the door. More info email or

  “FORMING INTENTIONAL DISCIPLES: The Path to Knowing & Following Jesus" with Sherry Weddell - Open to all - on Tues., Jan. 13, 2015 from 9am-5pm at St. Catherine of Siena Church, 200 Shelton Rd. in Trumbull.  How can we transmit a living, personal Catholic faith to future generations? By coming to know Jesus Christ, and following him as his disciples. We must make a conscious choice to know and follow Jesus before we can draw others to him. This work of discipleship lies at the heart of Forming Intentional Disciples, which was designed to help Church leaders, parish staff and all Catholics transform parish life from within. Continental Breakfast and Lunch will be served. To register click here. Click here for flyer. For info contact Angela Mantero, Dir. of Marriage and Family at (203) 416-1627 or email

More Upcoming Events »

Night in a box

December 17, 2014

NORWALK—On November 22, 25 teens from St. Jerome Parish participated in a homelessness awareness project called Night in a Box. All fall the teens of TOTAL, St. Jerome’s Youth group, have been talking about the importance of community and the Christian message that we are to love God and our neighbor as ourselves.

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New pope, new leadership changed tone of visitation of U.S. religious

December 16, 2014

By Cindy Wooden, Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- During the process of the apostolic visitation of communities of U.S. religious women, a shift in tone took place.

The Vatican's final report on the visitation, released Dec. 16, made observations, not accusations. Instead of giving the women instructions, it made suggestions -- mostly encouraging them to continue discernment about their identity, vocations promotion and formation, fidelity to Christ and the church, community life and cooperation with the wider church, including local bishops.

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Mariachis and flowers honor Our Lady of Guadalupe

December 16, 2014

BRIDGEPORT—In a tradition stretching back nearly 30 years, St. Mary Parish in Bridgeport honored the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe with a Vigil Mass on December 11. One of the best mariachi bands in the tri-state area serenaded the congregation for a full hour before Mass began, and then led the colorful opening procession. Parishioners brought baskets and armfuls of flowers and placed them in profusion before the image of Our Lady to the right of the altar. Click here for photos

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Prep helps bring Christmas to children in need

December 15, 2014

FAIRFIELD—Fairfield Prep sponsors an annual Christmas Toy Drive in support of the Diocese of Bridgeport Office of Social Concerns. Again this year, the school collected new, unwrapped toys for families in the Bridgeport area. Hundreds of toys plus packages of much-needed diapers filled Arrupe Hall. Members of the Prep Squires Club helped load the toys into vehicles for delivery. Shown from left: sophomores Sean Carroll, Alex Capozziello, Frank Fortunati, Matthew Denny and Charles Pollner.

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Ignatian Center to train lay spiritual directors

By Brian D. Wallace

“We are co-workers in the vineyard,” said Father James Bowler, S.J., at the launch of the Ignatian Spirituality Center at Fairfield University on November 23. The new program aims to further invest lay men and women in the charism of the Jesuits. Father Bowler, director of Ignatian Spirituality programs at Fairfield University, said that the Jesuits have always formed partnerships to testify that "in Christ we have received greater internal freedom."

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Pope praises Our Lady of Guadalupe as great missionary of 'our America'

By Cindy Wooden, Catholic News Service, VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Preceded by a procession of flags from the nations of the Americas and the recitation of the rosary in Spanish, Pope Francis and thousands of Catholics from across the Atlantic celebrated the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe in the Vatican.

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St. Thomas Aquinas School and Caroline House Partner to Help Each Others Language Studies

St. Thomas 2nd graders and Caroline House students exchange letters in each other’s language

Bridgeport, CT – On December 2nd, Caroline House students took a break from their regular studies to respond to their first set of letters from their young penpals at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic School in Fairfield, CT.

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Knights build parish crèche

TRUMBULL--The members of the Knights of Columbus 2961 hand built a new crèche and donated it to Christ the King Parish in appreciation for the support parish has given their council. The crèche is intricately crafted so that all its component pieces can be disassembled and the entire set rolled away for storage.

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Pope calls for more 'integration' of divorced Catholics, gays

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Pope Francis said that the Catholic Church must consider various ways to integrate the divorced and civilly remarried in the life of the church -- not merely allowing them to receive Communion, but letting them serve as eucharistic ministers and godparents -- and to make it easier for Catholic families to accept their homosexual members.

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Behold Your Mother!":
Meeting the Virgin Mary in D.C.

December 08, 2014

WASHINGTON—A new exhibit at The National Museum of Women in the Arts draws together a stunning collection of Renaissance and Baroque artwork. What do you suppose is the one verse of the Bible that has generated the most Christian art?

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Walking with purpose…

December 08, 2014

NEWTOWN—Nearly 200 women gathered at the Holy Innocents Faith Formation Center on December 3, at St. Rose of Lima in Newtown, Connecticut for an inspiring talk by Lisa Brenninkmeyer, the founder of Walking with Purpose, a women’s Catholic Bible study program.

Click here to view a slideshow

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K of C Museum highlights
Neapolitan crèches

December 04, 2014

NEW HAVEN—Neapolitan crèche-making, a distinct and widely known artistic tradition, is closely associated with Naples, the Italian city from which it takes its name. Each figure in these elaborate nativity scenes is a finely crafted work of art, employing techniques and customs dating back centuries to the Baroque era.

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February 2015!
Details will be announced here, and in the January 17 issue of the Fairfield County Catholic Newspaper. All things about our diocese will be available on your phone!

World Youth Day
Krakow, Poland
July 22-August 1, 2016!

Bishop Frank Caggiano invites the youth
and young adults (ages 16-35)
of the Diocese of Bridgeport to join him
on a pilgrimage of a lifetime.


Scholarships available.
For info email Julie Rodgers at:
.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
or call 203.416.1449

Diocese of Bridgeport Reorganization
Click here for article; click here for chart

2014 St. Augustine
Medal Recipients

  Click here for article, pictures,
and full list of nominees.

Synod of Bishops on the Family
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