January 27, 2019

Saint Scholastica Parish of the Lower Allegheny Valley Grouping

Daily Mass: Week of January 28
  8:00 am             Fr. Paul Merkovsky          Saint Joseph
  9:00 am             Fr. Michael Decewicz
                                Mon, Tues, Wed            Madonna
                                Thurs, Fri, Sat                 Saint Edward
10:00 am             Fr. Dale DeNinno              Saint Scholastica

Weekend Mass Schedule:  February 2 & 3
Saturday Vigil
  4:00 pm             Fr. Dale DeNinno              Saint Joseph
  4:30 pm             Fr. Paul Merkovsky           Madonna
  5:00 pm             Fr. Michael Decewicz       Saint Scholastica
  8:00 am             Fr. Michael Decewicz       Saint Francis
  9:00 am             Fr. Dale DeNinno              Saint Joseph
  9:30 am             Fr. Paul Merkovsky           Saint Scholastica
10:00 am             Fr. Michael Decewicz       Saint Edward
11:00 am             Fr. Dale DeNinno              Saint Joseph
11:30 am             Fr. Paul Merkovsky           Saint Mary
12:00 noon         Fr. Michael Decewicz        Saint Scholastica

Dear Parishioners,
     Winter weather wreaked havoc with attendance at Mass this past weekend. It didn't help that meteorologists were predicting "snow-mageddon" resulting in a run on bread, milk and toilet tissue at local grocery stores. Fear of snow and ice has an amazing power; so too, the fear of falling. Wisdom dictates the better path.
     Inclement weather is not the only reason that explains the drop in attendance at Mass in the churches of our parish grouping. There is also disillusionment and disappointment, disagreement and discontent. And then there is anger and even a measure of indifference. An understandable human response to all that has occurred throughout the Diocese of Pittsburgh in recent months. Starting with the release of a Grand Jury Report, the transfer of beloved priests, the arrival of unfamiliar priests, the grouping of parishes, the adjustment to a new Mass schedule, and on-going media scrutiny, it's no wonder that our peace of mind has been disturbed and our spiritual balance challenged.
     If wisdom dictates the better path in response to snow and ice shouldn't it all the more dictate our response to the disturbing drama of change and scandal that has so impacted our Catholic Church? What is the wiser thing to do when confronted with things beyond our reasoning? My personal "go-to-place" is always the cross. Let me share with you a passage from the First Letter of Saint Paul to the Corinthians:
     "The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: 'I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the learning of the learned I will set aside.'
     Where is the wise one? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made the wisdom of the world foolish? For since in the wisdom of God the world did not come to know God through wisdom, it was the will of God through the foolishness of the proclamation to save those who have faith. For Jews demand signs and Greeks look for wisdom, but we proclaim Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those who are called, Jews and Greeks alike, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength."
     Dear sisters and brothers, we must live and proclaim the power of the cross. In the midst of so much nonsense and foolishness and scandal, it is the only thing that makes sense. But it takes faith to say that. A faith that is willing to embrace the uncertainty, a faith that is willing to walk forward, a faith that is willing to open ones heart to God's plan, a faith that is willing to say YES.
     Jesus lived and breathed a whole-hearted YES to God's plan and it led him to the Cross. Can we do any less in the lived expression of our Catholic faith, even and especially in the current challenges that are ours? I urge upon everyone the kind of interior YES that will enable us to find spiritual equilibrium in so much that has thrown us off-balance.
     Please know of my prayers for you and your every intention. Kindly remember me and my brother priests, Father Mike Decewicz and Father Paul Merkovsky, in your prayers as well.
                                                                                                   Father Dale DeNinno

P.S. When I wear the hat of a businessman and look at the financial bottom line for each of the four parishes in our grouping, I am acutely aware that the decreased Mass attendance also accounts for a diminished offertory collection. That concerns me greatly when I have to sign checks in payment of our many bills. It is a reality that must be faced.


     Middle schoolers are invited to the Ministry Center on Wednesday, February 6, from 6:00-7:00pm for a fun and engaging chance to tackle some of the difficult topics facing young teens today.

     Our annual Appalachia Mission trip, which takes place  June 23-30, is seeking adult volunteers.  Please contact Meredith Troyan for more information.

     Are you looking for a way to participate more fully in the life of the parish and give back to our community?  Consider volunteering for one of our ministries.  We welcome parishioners willing to serve as a lector, Eucharistic Minister, altar server, usher, choir member, Children’s Liturgy of the Word leader, or hospitality ministry member.  If you are interested in volunteering, please contact the parish office. Help keep our parish healthy and vibrant!

A Lector Workshop for all those who proclaim The Word of the Lord during weekend and weekday Masses in the 6 churches of our 4 parishes in the Lower Allegheny Valley will be offered by Father Paul Merkovsky on the following dates and times:

Tuesday, February 19, at 1:00pm
in Madonna of Jerusalem Church in Sharpsburg

Wednesday, February 20, at 7:00 pm
in Saint Joseph Church in O'Hara

Thursday, February 21, at 7:00 pm
in Saint Scholastica Church in Aspinwall

     Regardless of the church in which you worship and serve as a Lector, attendance at just ONE of these workshops is required for everyone who serves in this most important liturgical ministry. You choose the date and time that best suits your schedule. Each session is scheduled to last for 90 minutes.

Offertory Collection
                Weekend of January 19 & 20: $4,032
                St. Anthony Program Collection: $859
You are always welcome at every Liturgy in our parish grouping.   If you use a St. Scholastica envelope when you pray in another area church, your donation will be sent here to support this parish. 

This Sunday:  Nehemiah 8:2-4a, 5-6, 8-10 / 1 Corinthians 12:12-30 / Luke 1:1-4; 4:14-21
Monday:  Hebrews 9:15, 24-28 / Mark 3:22-30
Tuesday:  Hebrews 10:1-10 / Mark 3:31-35
Wednesday:  Hebrews 10:11-18 / Mark 4:1-20
Thursday:  Hebrews 10:19-25 / Mark 4:21-25
Friday:  Hebrews 10:32-39 / Mark 4:26-34
Saturday:  Malachi 3:1-4 / Hebrews 2:14-18 / Luke 2:22-40
Next Sunday:  Jeremiah 1:4-5, 17-19 / 1 Corinthians 12:31—13:13 / Luke 4:21-30

     This year’s campaign will begin on March 6.. It is a wonderful opportunity to unite the Body of Christ in this great spiritual battle to end abortion through a prayer vigil on the public sidewalk in front of Planned Parenthood in Pittsburgh. To get involved, go to  40daysforlifepittsburgh.com (+) or contact Nikki Bruni at 412-926-9413 or by email here.

     Father Michael Decewicz’s new ministry, Addiction Recovery Ministry, will officially begin with a kickoff Mass at Saint Paul Cathedral on Sunday, February 10, at 2:30pm. The celebrant will be Bishop David Zubik and all are welcome to attend this Mass of Anointing and healing.  For more information visit our Facebook page, Addiction Recovery Ministry Pittsburgh.

     Addiction Recovery Ministry will hold a murder mystery dinner entitled, “Death and Taxes or The Peasants are Revolting” on Friday, February 22, starting at 6:00pm in the St. Juan Diego John Paul I Center. Come and enjoy an evening of ye olde comedy and mystery. Tickets are $50 and are available for purchase here (+) or by calling 412-784-8700.

Vagabond Missions in Sharpsburg hosted its Winter Kickoff Breakout with teens last week with the first ever Sharpsburg Sumo Wrestling Tournament. Every Tuesday at 6pm until the end of the semester we'll be hosting a Breakout night of food, games, prayer and gospel teaching at the St. Juan Diego John Paul I center in Sharpsburg. Thank you for your continued prayers and support of our teens and ministry!

3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
Saturday, January 26
   5:00pm  Jennifer Livesay (Family & Friends)
Sunday January 27
   9:30am   Deceased Members of the Romano & Marsico Families (Tish Marsico)
   12:00noon  John Lefko (Nancy & Stan Cieslak)

Monday, January 28—Saint Thomas Aquinas
  10:00am  Robert Caswell (Kathy & Chip Burke)

Tuesday, January 29—Weekday in Ordinary Time
   10:00am  All Saint Scholastica Parish Members

Wednesday, January 30—Weekday in Ordinary Time
   10:00am  Special Intention (The Certo Family)

Thursday, January 31—Saint John Bosco
   10:00am  Maureen C. Murray (Mary Catherine Scanlon)

Friday, February 1—Weekday in Ordinary Time
   10:00am  Denise Donnelly (Family)

4th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Saturday, February 2
   5:00pm  James Ranii (Kathleen McAndrews)
Sunday February 3
   9:30am  All Saint Scholastica Parish Members 
   12:00noon  Kevin Scanlon (The Scanlon Family)

Remember in your prayers all those who have died, especially Joan Kirby who was buried from St. Scholastica this week.

Are you missing the pew cards with Mass prayers?  They were removed due to their condition, but the prayers are also printed on the inside front cover of the blue hymnals.

Confirmation MEGA Meeting: Sunday, Jan. 27, at 10:45 in the parish hall.
Women’s Bible Study:  Tuesday, Jan. 29, at 1:00pm in the parish hall.
Christian Meditation: Wednesday, Jan. 30, following the 10:00am liturgy in the church.
Bible Study: Thursday, Jan. 31, at 7:30pm in the Ministry Center Library.
St. Monica Society: Saturday, Feb. 2, at 10:00am in the parish hall.

If you would like to receive a 2018 end of year contribution statement, please request one from the parish office at 412-781-0186 or by email here.


National Catholic Schools Week is the annual celebration of Catholic education in the United States. Please help us keep Catholic Education alive in our area by donating to Christ the Divine Teacher Catholic Academy. To make a donation, please visit https://cdtca.giving.factsmgt.com/public/appeal/fund/13218 (+) between 12pm Jan 29th and 12pm Jan 30th. No amount is too small; every dollar matters!

     Thanks for your help!  These items are needed now:  powdered or shelf stable milk, canned kidney or black beans, and hot chocolate mix. Please leave donations in plastic bags. Gray bins are in the church entrance. 
     Larger donations in bags (NOT boxes) and ALL clothing may be brought to the SIDE DOOR of 316 3rd Street, Aspinwall, from 10am-12noon on Mondays and Fridays. Please do NOT leave any donations outside 316 or 318 Third Street.
     Due to the weather there is an urgent need for bath or beach towels. Please bring to 316 3rd St at the above times.  Thank you!

    Our Aquinas Guild appreciates your donations to the local Saint Vincent de Paul Food Pantry.  Your donations of  canned vegetables and fruits — and any non-perishable items — are most welcome.  Please put donations in the red bin in the church’s main entrance. 

     On behalf of the St. Juan Diego Conference, St. Vincent DePaul Society, we extend our most sincere “Thank You” to St. Scholastica's members for your support of our Sharpsburg Food Pantry. We truly appreciate your generosity throughout 2018. A special thank you to those who organize the Angel Tree and bake the cookies. We are blessed to have faithful benefactors!
     Our Saint Scholastica Parish Mission is to continue the work of Christ together as a faith community, through the celebration of the Sacraments, living spiritually in the world, and working to be caring members of the community.  As committed Catholics, we are sent to bear the Light of Christ to transform the world by our devotion, service and witness.

309 Brilliant Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15215
Telephone 412-781-0186, ext. 10           
Fax 412-781-4316
Parish Office hours: Monday-Thursday 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.; Friday 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Clergy of the Lower Allegheny Valley Parish Grouping
Reverend Dale DeNinno, Pastor/Administrator    
Reverend Michael Decewicz, Senior Parochial Vicar    
Reverend Paul Merkovsky, Senior Parochial Vicar    
Ext. 10

Fr. Hyeong Cheol Lee,
    Chaplain for the Korean Community
Fr. John Mark Ogu
    Student, Duquesne Univ., In Residence/St. Juan Diego Parish
Fr. Dozie Egbe
    Chaplain, UPMC Presbyterian, In Residence/St. Padre Pio Parish

Receptionist/Safe Environment Coordinator    
Debbie VanDemark    Ext.10

Director of Music/ Bereavement Coordinator
Sister Patricia Baker, CDP     Ext. 17

Director of Faith Formation
Delia Barr
412-963-8885  x.301

Faith Formation Staff Member
Gina Musser     Ext. 21

Director of Adult Faith Formation and R.C.I.A.
Andrew Bechman, MEd     Ext. 18 

Youth Ministry Director
Meredith Troyan     Ext. 20 

Amy Condosta     Ext. 11

Facilities Staff
Bruce Hassing

205 Brilliant Avenue Pittsburgh, PA 15215

Mr. Mark N. Grgurich, MSEd     (412)781-7927