July 23, 2017

July 20, 2017

My dear parishioners,

 

Why do I wear a cassock? The following are not my thoughts but I would share them with you.

 

(Part 3)  “May it quickly show traces of wear and tear on the knees and shoulders, signs of your prayer and bearing other people’s burdens. May it not show such signs on the behind and elbows, indicators that you have sat down a lot or elbowed your way through the crowd.

 

First and foremost, love the Church who has given it to you. And love Jesus, who has offered you the Church and who has offered you to the Church, for which I am myself so grateful to Him.

 

Remember that passengers on a bus or on the metro believe they have more right to take a seat than a priest. Frankly speaking, it is immaterial whether they are right or not. What matters is that even when people hate you, they must not hate God.

 

More and more people will look at you; after all, your cassock gives you a lot of visibility. It also intimidates, and there will be fewer people brave enough to criticize you. This does not mean, however, that there will be no grounds for criticism.

 

Remember that your cassock is not the packaging of a completed product. The Lord has clothed you in it to mercifully hide your inadequacies and deficiencies.

 

Now that you know this, blessed are you if you behave accordingly (John 13:17).”

 

(Reprinted from Aleteia’s Polish Edition)

 

Monsignor Montecalvo

 

July 16, 2017

July 20, 2017

My dear parishioners,

 

Why do I wear a cassock? The following are not my thoughts but I would share them with you.

 

(Part 2)  “May your cassock always be a nuisance and a stumbling block when you start putting on airs and strutting like a peacock, falling prey to your vaulting ambitions. May you always stumble on it when you are led astray. Do not worry – it will stick in your way.

 

Do not be afraid to tuck it up and run to help your neighbor, even if you will look like a clown.

 

Sleeves can be rolled up. The cuff reminds you that a cassock is no dress uniform, but work clothes. But roll up your sleeves only to do the work He wants you to do, never to further your own agenda.

 

I sincerely wish that your cassock would show white salt marks: the ones on the back will be the signs of your sweat, the ones on the chest will be the marks of tears, both yours and those who, hugged by you, will confide in you their hundreds of worries big and small, grave and frivolous. I wish that these white salt marks would appear sooner than the first streaks of grey in your hair.

 

Do not be afraid to crumple and soil your cassock, coming to the rescue of the needy and wounded. Do not hesitate to tear it up to make bandage and dressing for human wounds. Remember that, if need be, it can be converted into a cloak or a tent.”

 

(Reprinted from Aleteia’s Polish Edition. Part 3 to follow)

 

Monsignor Montecalvo

 

July 9, 2017

June 29, 2017

My dear parishioners,

 

Why do I wear a cassock? The following are not my thoughts but I would share them with you.

 

(Part 1) “The first day he put on a cassock, a seminarian got a letter from a friend, a few years his senior. This is what he learned about his cassock:

 

A cassock. You are truly and rightfully happy wearing it; after all, you have been waiting for it since the time you entered the seminary. (once you become a
Philosopher/Theologian)

 

I can only hope that you will be equally happy when it has come to be what its color implies, i.e. a deadly shroud and a dying uniform. Be as enthusiastic about it when it starts to be your solitary confinement, cage and furnace where God will melt and purify you, an uncomfortable hermitage.

 

This cassock,, when necessary, will be your armor, provided you care to remember and use it this way. Wearing a cassock can and should be a form of prayer in itself, but it does not become a prayer just by putting it on.

 

Pockets. The deep ones are meant to store all the things you will share with others. Always have something to give away to the needy and children. Remember that they will appreciate a little money, your smile, and a word of solace more than your impeccable hymn singing. This is because people need first and foremost to hear that they are loved, and even more so to feel that this is true.

 

An inside breast pocket. It is not meant for holding an expensive pen. Carry in it letters you do not know how to answer, notes with the names of those you have promised to pray for, other people’s bills you have decided to pay, addresses you know should be visited, as their occupants will never come to you on their own, pictures of dogs, cats, grandchildren, and people in love as well as tree leaves and drawings nursery students have offered you. Keep this pocket filled at all times.“

(Reprinted from Aleteia’s Polish Edition. Parts 2 and 3 to follow)

 

Monsignor Montecalvo

 

July 2, 2017

June 29, 2017

My dear parishioners,

 

This weekend marks the beginning of my third year at Saint Sebastian’s. Where does the time go? It seems like yesterday that I was looking over my new kingdom. I remember turning onto Cole Avenue and seeing the beautiful parish church, the manicured grounds, and the vary comfortable rectory. I am proud of being your pastor and I am enjoying ministering in your midst.

 

We had a great parish picnic last weekend! God blessed us with a beautiful summer day. The was weather was just perfect for a parish event. We were lucky because David Belanger was on vacation from his new job so he, alongside Jaime Carrera, our maintenance man, set up the tables and chairs, prepared the serving tables, cooked the hamburgers, hot dogs, pulled pork and beans. You and your fellow parishioners brought delicious side dishes and desserts, Thank you!

 

When I spoke several weeks ago with Karen Schrott and Grace Dugan-Pizzuti, they enthusiastically supported the idea of a parish picnic. I also want to mention Marie Brito who did lots of behind the scenes work to make the picnic a success. Young Dominic Conti brought up the tables and chairs.  In between Masses there were  number of women who cut the rolls and prepared a number of things. If I forgot to mention you please know I thank you.

 

Many of you are going away for the summer. Mass attendance is already lower than normal. I pray you have a great summer and that wherever you go for the summer you find a Catholic church where you can attend Sunday Mass. Be safe..

God Bless…

Monsignor Montecalvo

 

June 11, 2017

June 29, 2017

My Dear Parishioners,

 

Here at our St. Sebastian Parish things are beginning to wind down for the summer months. The Religious Education Program is complete for this school year. In a week or two when school is over some of our families will be moving to their summer places.

 

In celebration of another successful year at St. Sebastian’s, and after speaking with Karin Schrott of Community Outreach and Grace Dugan of the Parish Social Committee, we decided we needed to end the year with an informal gathering of parishioners. So please read the bulletin announcements concerning our Parish Cookout on Sunday, June 25th after the 11 am Mass.

 

I am grateful for the many parishioners who have belonged to St. Sebastian’s for many, many years. We have some parishioners who attended St. Sebastian School, back when we had a school.

 

I am also grateful for the many young families who have moved to the area and decided to choose St. Sebastian’s as their parish. You and your children add so much to the parish.

 

St. Sebastian’s also has a number of single members who worship with us each weekend. Some are students at Brown or other colleges. Some are single and working. I am glad you worship here.

 

I am really happy that you find St. Sebastian’s your home. Everyone is invited to everything we do.

 

Have a great week…

 

Monsignor Montecalvo

 

May 21, 2017

May 17, 2017

My Dear Parishioners,

 In July 2016 I celebrated the Mass of Christian Burial for a former parishioner of St. Sebastian’s, Mr. Robert Barry. In recent years Mr. Barry moved to the state of Connecticut. Believe it or not, the rules for assisted living are much more accommodating to people’s needs.

Mr. Robert Barry received his sacraments at St. Sebastian’s parish. He attended our parish school when we had a parish school.

I believe it is good pastoral practice to always be kind to former parishioners. I believe if the parish can meet their needs we should. And so when Mr. Barry died, his  niece called and asked if we could celebrate his Mass of Christian Burial at St. Sebastian’s. I immediately said yes.

At the cemetery his niece told me Mr. Barry loved St. Sebastian’s parish very much and that I would be hearing from her. Ten months have passed since Mr. Barry’s funeral. The parish has been contacted from his niece.

Mr. Barry has designated ‘Fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) to the Church of Saint Sebastian, a non-profit organization with a place of worship in Providence, Rhode Island, for its general tax-exempt purposes.’

On behalf of St. Sebastian parish I want to thank Mr. Robert Barry and his family. I ask all our parishioners to keep Mr. Barry in our prayers. I thank God for his generosity in remembering our parish in his will.

Monsignor  Montecalvo

 

May 14, 2017

May 17, 2017

My Dear Parishioners,

 The 2017 Catholic Charity Appeal runs through June. But I would like to conclude our parish’s in-pew solicitation at the end of May. As of today our parish has raised $68,734.00. We are $11,088.00 short of our goal.

For your convenience (forgive me if you have already contributed to the 2017 Catholic Charity Appeal) an envelope is included with this bulletin.  This envelope can be used to make your 2017 Catholic Charity Appeal donation. Complete all the information asked for on the envelope and return it next Sunday. Just place the Catholic Charity Appeal envelope  along with your regular budget envelopes next Sunday.

As you know the Catholic Charity Appeal is the major source of funding for the Diocese of Providence. The Catholic Charity fund supports numerous ministries and programs throughout the Diocese. For example, the social service ministries provide direct support to the poor, the hungry, and the homeless, to immigration and refugee services, and emergency rent and medical aid.

Without your financial assistance the needs of many people in the state of Rhode Island will not be met.

If you have already made a pledge or donation to the Catholic Charity Appeal, I thank you. If you have not, please consider using the envelopes in this week’s bulletin and make a pledge or
donation.

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Monsignor  Montecalvo

 

May 7, 2017

May 2, 2017

My Dear Parishioners,

 I want to share a letter I received from Fr. Rodrigues of the Bishop’s Office inviting you to celebrate a day in honor of Mary.

“Dear Monsignor,

      As you are aware Bishop Tobin has announced that in the Diocese of Providence, the calendar year of 2017 will be observed as a “Year with Mary our Mother” in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the apparitions of Our Blessed Mother, Mary in Fatima, Portugal.

 Therefore on Saturday, the 13th of May we will solemnly commemorate the occasion of the first apparitions in Fatima with a brief outdoor procession around Cathedral Square with the statue of Our Lady of Fatima into the Cathedral at 11:00 am. This will be followed by the recitation of the Holy Rosary including various languages (English, Portuguese, Spanish, Italian, Polish and French.) At 12:05 pm Bishop Tobin will celebrate Holy Mass in hour of Our Lady of Fatima, at which you are invited to concelebrate.

 I am writing to ask if you would kindly extend this invitation to your entire parish community.

This celebration in honor of the Blessed Mother should prove to be a truly joyful and grace-filled even for our Diocesan Church during this most special year dedicated to her honor.

 Wishing you a truly blessed Easter Season, I am,

 Sincerely yours,

Reverend Jeremy J Rodrigues

Director, Office of Divine Worship“

April 23, 2017

April 18, 2017

My Dear Parishioners,

 I am pleased to welcome Bishop Robert B. Higgins to our parish to administer the sacrament of Confirmation. We are friends from our Air Force Chaplain days. Here is some information on the Bishop.

Bishop Higgins is Vicar for Veterans Affairs at the Archdiocese for the Military Services USA (AMS) where he is responsible for over 270 Catholic chaplains in 153 VA Medical Centers throughout the United States, Puerto Rico and Guam. Bishop Higgins also serves as the Bishop Protector for the 10,000 members of the Catholic War Veterans of America and shares responsibility for the Eastern Vicariate of the AMS.

Bishop Higgins was born 22 February 1944 in Longford, Ireland. He is a graduate of the Pontifical Lateran University in Rome and was ordained a priest for the diocese of Sacramento, California 9 March 1968. Following parish assignments in Roseville and Grass Valley Bishop Higgins entered the United States Air Force in September 1974 and served as a Catholic chaplain until his retirement in the grade of colonel in October 2004.

Bishop Higgins’ Air Force assignments included Lowry AFB, NAS Keflavik, Laughlin AFB, Bitburg AB, Malmstrom AFB, Air Command & Staff College, Maxwell AFB, RAF Lakenheath, Pope AFB, United States Air Force Academy, Nellis AFB, Headquarters United States Air Forces Europe, and Headquarters Pacific Air Forces. The bishop is a graduate of Air Command and Staff College and Air War College. His many military decorations include The Legion of Merit with one oak leaf cluster and the Meritorious Service Medal with seven oak leave clusters.

Bishop Higgins was named a Prelate of Honor (Monsignor) in 1996. In April of 2004 he was named titular bishop of Casa Calanae and auxiliary bishop for the Archdiocese for the Military Services by His Holiness Pope John Paul II. He was ordained a bishop 3 July 2004 in the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, Washington DC and assumed his present duties 1 October 2004.

Bishop Higgins is a Knight Commander of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, holds an Airline Transport Pilot Certificate and several Flight Instructor Certificates. He is also a seasoned motorcyclist and rides a BMW R1100RT.

Mons. Montecalvo

 

April 16, 2017 Easter Sunday

April 13, 2017

My Dear Parishioners,

Happy Easter…

Today we gather around our newly lit Paschal candle. The flame of the Paschal candle leads us, draws us, to You, oh God!

The beautiful words of the Exsultet which proclaimed at the Easter Vigil reminds us, “This is the night that even now, throughout the world, sets Christian believers apart from worldly vices and from the gloom of sin, leading them to grace and joining them to His Holy one.

We pray this Easter, “That the light of Christ rising in glory dispel the darkness of our hearts and minds.”

St. Augustine wrote, “our hearts are restless until they rest in God.” We yearn for something greater than yourselves. We seek a light to guide us through the sometime gloomy circumstances of our daily lives.

When I was a young college seminarian and Fr. Robert Randall taught 2nd year college English, he taught us to appreciate the writings of Saint John Henry Newman. One of Saint Newman’s most popular poems is Lead, Kindly Light.

“Lead, Kindly Light, amidst the encircling gloom,

Lead thou me on!

The night is dark, and I am far from home,

Lead thou me on!”

Happy Easter…

Mons. Montecalvo

 

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