Category Archives: Uncategorized

Cross Catholic Outreach

We thank Msgr. David Benz for sharing with us last Sunday the important work that Cross Catholic Outreach is providing to the poorest of the poor in more than 30 countries around the world.  To make a donation, visit crosscatholic.org  or use one of the brochures available in the church vestibule.

During his homily, Msgr. Benz mentioned a video concerning wells and the collection of water.  Here are a couple of videos produced by Cross Catholic Outreach:

You can watch more videos produced by Cross Catholic Outreach by visiting their YouTube channel.

Holy Week and Easter 2020 Schedule

March 28 – Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion
9:15am Stations of the Cross at St. Joseph Church
10am Mass* and Blessing of Palms at St. Joseph Church

March 29 – Monday of Holy Week
10am Mass at St. Joseph Church

March 31 – Wednesday of Holy Week
10am Mass at St. Joseph Church
10:30am Stations of the Cross at St. Joseph Church

April 1 – Holy Thursday
5pm Mass of the Lord’s Supper at St. Joseph Church
St. Joseph Church will remain open until 9pm
(7:30pm Mass of the Lord’s Supper at Presentation BVM Church)

April 2 – Good Friday
St. Joseph Church will be open 12 noon until 4pm for private prayer.
7:30pm Solemn Service of the Lord’s Passion at St. Joseph Church
(3pm Solemn Service of the Lord’s Passion at Presentation BVM)

April 3 – Holy Saturday
4pm-5pm Sacrament of Reconciliation at Presentation BVM
5pm Blessing of Easter Foods at Presentation BVM
8pm Solemn Easter Vigil at Presentation BVM

April 4 – Easter Sunday of the Lord’s Resurrection
10am* Mass at St. Joseph Church
(8:30am & 11:30am Mass at Presentation BVM)

*Please note: the Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday Masses from St. Joseph will be livestreamed on the parish’s website and Facebook page.  Those who are unable to attend the Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday services in person are encouraged to participate in the livestreams from the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul.  Click here for the schedule of services from the Cathedral.

Due to Covid, the Washing of Feet, which is always optional, will not take place on Holy Thursday.  The Veneration of the Cross on Good Friday should take place with a genuflection or a bow.  Please do not touch or kiss the Cross this year.

There is a sign-up sheet available on the bulletin board for adoration of the Blessed Sacrament on Holy Thursday evening and Good Friday afternoon.  Please consider signing up for a time slot (or two) so that the Blessed Sacrament will not be left alone during this solemn time. Please note that due to Covid, the Blessed Sacrament will be reposed in the sanctuary of the Church rather than in the small side room near the organ.

The bishops of the United States prescribe, as minimal obligation, that all persons over 14 years of age are gravely obliged to abstain from meat on all Fridays of Lent .  All persons over 18 years of age and up to the beginning of their 60th year are gravely obliged to fast by limiting themselves to a single full meal on Good Friday, while the other two meals are to be light.

2020 St. Charles Borromeo Seminary Appeal

The 2020-2021 St. Charles Borromeo Seminary Appeal has now begun. A donation to the Appeal supports our seminarians, candidates for the Permanent Diaconate and lay church leaders in their formation. Most importantly, your gift provides for the future of our faith. Please prayerfully consider a gift to the Appeal to provide for the future generations of the Church.

For more information or to donate, click here.

2020 Voter’s Guide

On November 3, general elections will take place with various local, state and federal offices on the ballot. Certainly, there is an increased focus on faithful citizenship given that this year features a presidential election. 

In order to assist Catholics as they prepare to vote with formed consciences, the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference has produced a Presidential Candidate Comparison document and a State Legislative Voters Guide. These documents seek to educate the faithful about candidates and their positions on issues of importance to Catholic voters. The documents are posted at catholicphilly.com, the official digital news agency of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

In addition, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops is once again offering to the Catholic faithful Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship. This teaching document on the political responsibility of Catholics is available in English and Spanish

You may wish to visit https://www.usccb.org/offices/justice-peace-human-development/forming-consciences-faithful-citizenship for an array of voter information resources. The material is designed to help Catholics form their consciences in accordance with God’s truth. 

Great News!

Archbishop Pérez has announced that parishes of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia will be able to resume public Masses this weekend,  June 6 and 7, 2020.  We look forward to welcoming you back!  Let us keep our eyes fixed on Jesus as we make our way back to the in person celebration of the Mass.

While our county remains in the Yellow Phase of statewide reopening, all of us need to do our part to make sure that our return to Mass is a peaceful and safe experience for all.  Please take the time to read the instructions below.  We ask everyone to follow these guidelines when attending Mass during this period.  We know that there is a lot listed here, but please read carefully.

  • The obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation continues to be lifted during the Yellow Phase.  You are not required to attend Mass at this time.
  • Please stay home if you are sick.
  • Please stay home if you are at higher risk of severe illness with COVID19.  If you are uncertain about your risk status, please consult your doctor and also the CDC Guidelines at this link.
  • Mass will continue to be available via live-stream.
  • Before coming to Church, please wash your hands for 20 seconds using soap and water.
  • Before entering the Church, please put on a face mask or cloth covering.  Exceptions to this are “children younger than 2 years old, anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious, and anyone who is incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the cloth face covering without assistance” (CDC Guidelines).
  • You are welcome to bring your own missal/readings with you – even electronic versions.  Please do not leave any items in the pews after Mass..
  • When taking your seat, please honor all posted signs about where you may sit. We have every other pew blocked off in order to promote social distancing.
  • Members of the same household may sit together as normal.  Please place 6 feet between your household and members of a different household.
  • For the time being, we will not have the public recitation of devotions prior to Mass.  You are encouraged to pray privately prior to Mass.
  • There will be limited singing during Mass during the Yellow Phase.  Hymnals should not be used.
  • There will be no Sign of Peace during Mass during the Yellow Phase.
  • The Precious Blood will not be distributed during Mass during the Yellow Phase.
  • There should be no holding of hands during the Our Father.
  • Please maintain social distancing in the Communion line.  Please keep several pews between yourself and the person in front of you while in line and when returning to your pew.
  • Please remove your mask before receiving Holy Communion.
  • At the conclusion of Mass, please exit the Church and proceed directly to your car. Please do not congregate for any reason.
  • Please take a parish bulletin home with you. They will be available on tables as you exit the building. They will not be distributed by ushers and they should not be brought into the Church.
  • Please leave your mask on until you exit the Church.

The Archdiocese, working with Ascension Press, has produced a video for the faithful to give an overview of the guidelines for returning to the in person celebration of the Mass. Please share this video as widely as possible so that everyone knows what to do when returning to Holy Mass. The video is available in:

Father Harrison’s Message for the Seventh Sunday of Easter

I believe that I shall see the good things of the Lord in the land of the living.
(Psalm 27 – Psalm for the Seventh Sunday of Easter)

During this bleak time of the pandemic these words may seem hollow.  Where can we actually see the good things of the Lord?  When will we be able to do everything just as we had done in the very recent past?  How will we be able to live as before?  We are continually confronted by the problems created by one of God’s smallest creature – a virus.  And we, the best of all creatures, are confounded by the workings of this minute organism.  Where are those good things?  Are they just the promise of heaven, whenever we may arrive there?  Do we have to “tough it out” here in order to receive the reward hereafter?

When Philip asked Jesus to let the apostles see the Father, He questioned Philip, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and still you do not understand?  If you have seen Me, you have seen the Father.”  Have we been with Jesus all this time (the whole of our lives for most of us) and still we cannot see the good things of the Lord?  They are all there, in that same living person, Jesus.

Jesus is everything to us, quite literally.  In Him do we find the image of God, the love, mercy and understanding of God, not as coming from a philosopher or an academic paper, but from God, Himself!  He has described the kind of world that He wants for us, not merely as a possibility but as a project to be completed – by us!  Look beyond the evils of the day and ask what is needed here or there.  You will find that the answer lies in the descriptive words of Jesus – love your neighbor as yourself.  The answer to our present problems is not simply in a vaccine for the virus – as significant as that may be – but rather in the strong, vibrant faith of the individual follower of Jesus – us.  We carry around in our hearts the answer to the problems of mankind.  When the virus has diminished, there will still be hunger, hatred, prejudice, inequality, etc.

Do we really want the good things of the Lord – here, on earth?  Then we must open our eyes and recognize the answer before us: we must be peace in the midst of war; we must be love in the face of violence; we must be hope in the face of despair; we must be self-sacrifice for the oppressed; we must be home for the homeless!

To do this we must not be distracted. We must stay focused on Jesus!.

Happy Mother’s Day

We wish all the Mothers, Grandmothers, Godmothers and Spiritual Mothers in our
St. Joseph Parish family a very happy Mother’s Day!

“Loving God, as a mother gives life and nourishment to her children, so you watch over Your Church.  Bless these women, that they may be strengthened as Christian mothers.  Let the example of their faith and love shine forth.  Grant that we, their sons and daughters, may honor them always with a spirit of profound respect.”

-Source: Book of Blessings by Prepared by International Commission on English in the Liturgy A Joint Commission of Catholic Bishops’ Conferences, The Liturgical Press, Collegeville, Minnesota, 1989

 

 

Happy Easter!

We wish our St. Joseph family, both near and far, a blessed Easter.  For those who couldn’t make it to St. Joe’s today, we are bringing St. Joe’s to you!  Here are some pictures that we took today.

Father Harrison’s Easter 2020 Message

Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

Happy Easter to everyone!  Yes, it is still Easter, despite the peculiar situation in we all are living right now.  It is still our Easter celebration – Jesus has risen from the dead.  He who took the sins of humanity on His own shoulder brought them to the grave and has risen free of them.  And now, thanks to God’s gracious mercy, we share that very same life through the Sacraments of Baptism and Eucharist.

This last Lent was “different”.  Usually, we engage that season with prayer and penance and properly dispose ourselves for a fitting celebration of Easter.  But now that, in a sense, we were deprived of that usual Lenten routine, are we as ready to celebrate the new life of Easter?  Are we prepared to get past the discomfort of not having all the ordinary Lenten activities and, then, fully engage the mysticism of our union with the Risen Christ?  Will the world be able to see in us a clear description of this new life with all its virtue and joy and undefeated hope?

Yes, we may not presently have the “usual” Easter items around us.  But, then, isn’t Easter more than that: the chocolate eggs and bunnies, fading lilies; new clothes and Easter baskets?  Easter is so much more than these passing things.  True, we are used to them and they do make us feel good (perhaps a little too nostalgic about our own childhood Easters).  But, does our faith and the strength surrounding Easter depend on such thing?  No, of course not!

Then, let us engage the world around us with the considerable experience of knowing Jesus crucified and risen.  Let us approach each aspect of life, both happy and unhappy, with the joy on realizing that: His resurrection is the promise of our own – today; that His strength is ours – today; that His wisdom brings hope to all – today; that His mercy is life-giving – today; that His presence is for all – today – through our hearts, united in Him!  Especially now, under these viral circumstances, there are people who really do need to experience the risen Christ.  Do not be afraid to bring Him to them!

Archbishop Perez’s Easter Message

Archbishop Nelson J. Pérez released video pastoral messages in English and Spanish on the occasion of Easter 2020.

To view the video is English, please click below.

Pastoral Message to the Faithful from Archbishop Pérez on the Occasion of Easter 2020 from Kearns Media Consulting LLC on Vimeo.

To view the video is Spanish, please click below.

Mensaje del arzobispo Nelson J. Pérez a los fieles con motivo del Domingo de Pascua from Kearns Media Consulting LLC on Vimeo.

Easter Sunday at St. Joseph

On Easter Sunday, St. Joseph Church will be open from 9am until noon.  In the sanctuary of the Church, you will be able to obtain Holy Water that Father Harrison will have blessed the previous evening at the private Easter Vigil service.  (Please bring your own bottle in which to take home the Holy Water.)

The Easter/Pentecost reflection booklets will be available in the gym.

If you bring your offering envelope, please drop it in the mailslot of the Parish Center entrance along Waters Rd.  Thank you!