January 26, 2014

      "He called them, and immediately they left their boat and their father and followed him." James and his brother John dropped everything to follow Christ. In leaving their boat, they also left their livelihood. In leaving their father, they said farewell to the comforts of home and family. They embarked on this unknown journey with Jesus, traveling "around all of Galilee," with neither stability nor security. All they had was trust. How remarkable this is! They had such great faith in this man who "called them" on the seashore. Clearly, their encounter with Christ was life-changing, even before they knew the full truth of who Jesus was.
      We, on the other hand, already know. We have the benefit of being on the other side of Christ's life. We know about his miracles, his resurrection, and the whole history of Christian faith. In a sense, it should be easier for us to "leave our nets" than it was for the sets of brothers in today's Gospel. We have so many reasons to believe that Jesus was truly the Son of God. But yet how often do we resist the call to surrender our lives to Christ? How attached we are to our regular routines and our predictable plans. Yet, where would we be today if the apostles had tried to part-time it with the Lord? What if they had only followed him on the weekends? Would the Christian message have spread at all? So much was accomplished through the sincere faith of these humble fishermen. What could we accomplish if we trusted in Jesus as they did?
                                                           ©2013 Liturgical Publications Inc
      Many of you saw the announcement of my retirement in last week's Pittsburgh Catholic.  However, I will not be retiring until a week or two after Easter- over three months from now.   I have been thinking about this for the past year or so and came to the conclusion four or five months ago that this was the moment for me to retire: I was 71 in November; I am now completing the sixth and final year of my term as pastor; I want to lay aside the managerial/administrative responsibilities of being a pastor (but not the liturgical ministry of being a priest), and I want to make this transition while I am still relatively healthy and relatively sane!!!
       The best moment in the week for me as a priest is at Sunday Mass!!!  Why??  Because after six years of being with you and sharing so many moments of joy and sorrow, and many liturgical seasons of grace, I have come to know you and love you.  When I preside at Mass I look out at you, the congregation, and see you each of you individually . . .  and I am deeply moved!  My soul is stirred by your often silent witness of your faith and faithfulness.  This experience increases both my faith and joy and I am renewed as a priest.  I am then reminded of the saying: "Shepherds don't make shepherds, sheep make shepherds"!!
      So, this is not the time to say farewell.  The original date of my retirement was Monday, April 28th.  I hope to have that pushed back to Monday, May 5th.  The reason being that on the weekend of May 3rd and 4th we have scheduled three First Holy Communion Masses and Confirmation with Bishop Zubik.  So, I contacted the diocese about this and will let you know what is the official date.  Meanwhile we prepare for Ash Wednesday (March 5th), Spring, and the great feast of Easter (April 20th).   God bless.   Fr. Ken

      A working session including a light dinner, will be hosted by The Aquinas Guild on Thursday, February 20th in the Pastoral Center at 6:00 pm to continue the planning of spiritual, social and service related activities for the women of our parish.  Please come with researched ideas to present to the group.  We will plan the calendar for Spring and Fall.  RSVP by Monday, February 17th to Mary Ellen Maher:  412-721-1160 or maryemaher@msn.com.   If you have an idea you would like to present, please let Mary Ellen know to place it on the agenda.  There is no charge for the dinner.

      Have you experienced a loss of your baby due to a miscarriage or infant death?
      "Song of Simeon" is a program to support parents who have experienced a loss of a baby through miscarriage, stillbirth, or early infant death.  Join us for an afternoon of information, reflection, and healing at St. Joseph Parish, O'Hara Township on Sunday, February 2, from 12:30 pm to 2:30 pm. This free program will provide a sacred space where you can share your loss with others and celebrate the life of your baby. Childcare arrangements during the program are available. To register for this afternoon event or for more information call Lisa Barton at 412-801-1009 or email songofsimeon@verizon.net.

To live charitably means not looking out for our own interests, but carrying the burdens of the weakest and poorest among us.                        --Pope Francis

Help Needed!
      Nancy Heil coordinates an extensive Christian service effort for people and families who are poor or homeless.  She requests the following items:
      • men's warm winter socks and men's tubesocks;
      • 2XL and larger new or gently used men's sweatpants;
      • adult-sized backpacks;
      • new or gently used washcloths;
      Instead of McDonald's giftcards, Nancy asks that people donate Port Authority ConnectCards. In the bitter cold weather, people need to be able to ride a bus. Please have only $2.50 of value loaded onto each card. The cards are available at Giant Eagle. ConnectCards may be left in the small blue gift bag near the collection bins in the vestibule of the church.
      Food items that are needed include:   
      • macaroni and cheese;
      • oatmeal: either boxed single-serve (8 - 12 serving bags per box)  or small-sized round "traditional" containers;
      • canned chicken or stew;
      • cereal bars;
      • fruit and pudding cups.
      These groceries go to poor families and to people living in shelters.
      Donated items may be left in the bins in the back of church. We appeal to all to refrain from leaving any items on the porches of  316 and 318 Third St.
      Thank you for your generosity!

      The RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults) is the process by which adults enter the Catholic Church.  With joy we announce that two people have decided to join our community through the RCIA this year.  Jeffrey Witte will enter the order of catechumens as he prepares for baptism, and Mara Baginski, a baptized Christian, is preparing to be received into full communion with the Catholic Church.  This Sunday at the 11 a.m. Mass, we will celebrate a Rite of Acceptance into the Order of Catechumens for Jeffrey.  On February 9, also at the 11 a.m. Mass, we will celebrate a Rite of Welcoming for Mara.  Please pray for Jeffrey, Mara, their sponsors, and our RCIA team.

      Contribution statements for the year 2013 will be available after January 10, 2014.  Please contact the parish office at 412-781-0186 ext. 24 or email Chrissy at financeoffice@saintscholastica.com.

      The Reconciliation Retreat is Saturday, February 1 from 10:00 am - 11:00 am in the Pastoral Center.  This is for all second graders and a parent.  We ask that parents please be prompt so that we may start exactly at 10:00 am.

      "I was a stranger and you welcomed me."
      Is there anything that lifts us up faster than a hearty welcome? Anything better than knowing that the people around you are happy that you're there?
      Wherever people get that feeling, they want to stay.  And when it is time to leave, they want to come back again.
      What if every person who walked into our church or any parish event felt that way?  Whether having grown up in the neighborhood or recently arrived, what if everything she or he experienced said, "Come in, you belong here."
      To further enhance the vibrancy and richness of our parish life together, the Pastoral Council is working on events that will be fun and help us all to get to know each other better.  In addition, we can actively enliven the ways in which we welcome visitors and new members of our parish family. That is why, during the Liturgical Year that runs from the First Sunday of Advent-2013 until the feast of Christ the King-2014, we are celebrating the "Year of Welcoming"at St. Scholastica Parish.
      Programs, activities, worship services, and outreach efforts during this special year will be grounded on the goal of building a wider, deeper, and more inclusive spirit of a welcoming community among all parishioners.
      Look for more information on opportunities to share your smiles, warmth, and ideas as together we celebrate the Year of Welcoming at St. Scholastica.
      For, as Jesus said: "Whoever welcomes [a] child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me. (Mk 9:37)

      Coffee and doughnuts will be served today after the 9:00 am and 11:00 am Masses in the Pastoral Center. Please join us for a warm cup of coffee, a delicious doughnut and best of all, fellowship with your fellow parishioners. As Catholic Schools Week gets underway, representatives from our school, Christ the Divine Teacher Catholic Academy, will be on hand to pour coffee and answer questions about enrollment. We hope you will stop in!

        I am more than delighted to report to you the results of our recent Church Alive Financial Campaign.  Our target was $1,225,000 and our total of cash and pledges is $1,644,310!!!   What you have pledged to the diocese and parish is 134% of our target!!!   Recall that we will receive 40% of the $1,225,000, but will receive 60% of what is over that amount.  Thank you for your generosity and know that your donations will enhance the ministries of both the diocese and our parish so that we can truly be Church Alive for the future generations!  Gratefully, Fr. Ken

      Natural Family Planning Course starts February 12 at 7:00 pm.  For details, call or email Laura Hall at 412-229-8652 or 8halls@gmail.com.

Sunday: Is 8:23--9:3/1 Cor 1:10-13, 17/Mt 4:12-23 or 4:12-17
Monday: 2 Sm 5:1-7, 10/Mk 3:22-30
Tuesday: 2 Sm 6:12b-15, 17-19/Mk 3:31-35
Wednesday: 2 Sm 7:4-17/Mk 4:1-20
Thursday: 2 Sm 7:18-19, 24-29/Mk 4:21-25
Friday: 2 Sm 11:1-4a, 5-10a, 13-17/Mk 4:26-34
Saturday: 2 Sm 12:1-7a, 10-17/Mk 4:35-41
Next Sunday: Mal 3:1-4/Heb 2:14-18/Lk 2:22-40 or 2:22-32

      Join us for Pet Therapy on Tuesday, January 28 from 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm.  Contact the Youth Ministry office for more information.

      Spaghetti dinner Sunday, February 9, from 4:00 - 7:00 pm in the cafeteria.  $10 for all-you-can-eat, includes salad and dessert.  $30 for a family.  Wine will also be available for purchase for the adults.  Proceeds benefit the Appalachia mission trip.

      World Marriage Day is celebrated this year on the weekend of February 8-9, 2014. The annual Diocesan Celebration of World Marriage Day will take place on Saturday, February 8, 2014 at St. Thomas More Parish, in South Hills. The event will begin with Mass at 5:00 pm with Bishop David A. Zubik as the Presider and homilist. Immediately following Mass there will be a reception in the St. Thomas More Family Life Center. A reflection by Beth and Michael Brucker, from St. Maurice Parish, will follow. All engaged and married couples are invited to attend. Donation is $10.00/couple. To register please call the Office for Faith Formation, 412-456-3160.

      We will have Intersection on Sunday, February 2 from 10:00 am - 11:00 am in the Ministry Center.  All students in grades 8-12 are invited for this lively discussion of the gospel.

      There will be a Catechist and Small Group Leader meeting on Monday, January 27 from 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm in the Pastoral Center.

      Christ the Divine Teacher Catholic Academy is having an Alumni Event on Thursday, January 30.  All alumni of St. Scholastica are invited.  Our boys varsity basketball team is playing a game at 7:45 pm and a reception will follow in the cafeteria after the game.  Please contact Traci Giuffre at 412-781-7927 if you plan to attend.

Saturday, Vigil of the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, January 25
   5:00 pm  Anniv., Katherine Arturo (Renee Arturo)
      Presider:  Fr. Kenneth White

Sunday, Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, January 26
   7:30 am  Parishioners of St. Scholastica
       Presider:  Fr. Sean Hogan
   9:00 am  Wendy Pease (Tonja & Alex Condron)
       Presider:  Fr. Kenneth White
   11:00 am  Robert Styslinger (Styslinger & Urish Families)
       Presider:  Fr. Kenneth White

Monday, weekday, January 27
   8:30 am  Birthday, Helen Brandl (Kathleen Piper)

Tuesday, St. Thomas Aquinas, January 28
   8:30 am  Mary Vollmer (Edna Jenca)

Wednesday, weekday, January 29
   8:30 am  Anne Bonidie (Cindy & Dave Giovannitti)

Thursday, weekday,  January 30

Friday, St. John Bosco, January 31
   8:30 am  Mary Catherine Cavanaugh (Jim & Vicki Cavanaugh)

Saturday, weekday, February 1
   9:00 am  Andrea Certo (Certo Family)

Saturday, Vigil of the Presentation of the Lord, February 1
   5:00 pm  Antonia Vilvaldi Lopardo (Antonietta Costa & Family)
      Presider:  Fr. Kenneth White

Sunday, Presentation of the Lord,  February 2
   7:30 am  Carol Lou Wolcott (Mary Labriola)
       Presider:  Fr. Kenneth White
   9:00 am  Frank Marsico (Tish Marsico)
       Presider:  Fr. Sean Hogan
   11:00 am  Parishioners of St. Scholastica
       Presider:  Fr. Kenneth White

309 Brilliant Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15215
Church Office 412-781-0186; Fax 412-781-4316
World Wide Web: www.saintscholastica.com
Parish Office:  Monday-Friday 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.  

Rev. Kenneth White, M.Th., M.Ed……………....…Ext. 14

Director of Music/Bereavement
Sr. Patricia Baker, C.D.P……………………….…...Ext. 17

Director of Adult Religious Education & R.C.I.A.
Andrew Bechman, M.Ed……………………….…....Ext. 18

Director of Religious Education & Youth Ministry
Jamie Dillon, M.S., M.A., R.R.T…………………....Ext. 20

Program Director for Religious Education
Gina Musser……………………………………...….Ext. 21

Coordinator of the Protection of Children
Mrs. Mary Swindal…………………………...……..Ext. 10
Toll-free Victim's Assistance Hotline 1-888-808-1235

Church Secretary
Pat Wolfson…………………………………...…….Ext. 10

Office Manager/Parish Accountant
Chrissy Morton ……………………………………..Ext. 24

Facilities Manager
Tom Galda

Bulletin Editor
Amy Condosta
Submissions for bulletin items are due by Noon on Mondays

Sr. Dorothy Dolak S.C.N……………………(412)781-7927