Updated: Jan 9
Dear Friends in Christ:
It is a time of transition! This coming week is going to be a full one of welcoming two new members to our family of faith!
This week we will welcome our new priest Father Anthony Federico as he begins his ministry here. Father Federico was ordained a priest of Jesus Christ last Saturday, June 22, 2019, by Archbishop Blair at the Cathedral of Saint Joseph in Hartford. Father Federico, just 35 years old, has a fascinating and extensive background for someone so young. Father is the oldest of five children of Anthony and Debra. He is a graduate of Notre Dame High School in West Haven and Providence College where he majored in Theology. Father Federico then worked at ESPN for a number of years beginning in the tape warehouse where his job was finding and shuttling vintage footage where it needed to go, then he moved to the ESPN “mobile group” working in the digital media division. Six years ago after soul searching Father Federico realized God was calling him to the priesthood and entered Seminary. Father completed his studies for the priesthood this past May at the Catholic University of America.
“I feel like I’ve been called to do something powerful and wonderful and it’s my honor to say yes to this,” Father Federico was quoted as saying prior to his ordination as a transitional deacon. He sees his ministry as “introducing Jesus to people, especially young people in a personal way. I think I’m an old soul in some ways and a millennial in other ways.” Father Federico said he still loves sports, especially the New York Yankees (we will have to agree to disagree on that topic), and loves to read and write. He’s working on his third novel.
I am beyond thrilled that Archbishop Blair has assigned Father Federico to us as our new Parochial Vicar for his first priestly assignment and look forward to working with him and watching him grow in his priesthood as he begins with us this week! Welcome Father Federico to your new home!
This week we will also welcome Mrs. Catherine Szerszen to our family of faith as our new Principal for Saint Bridget School. I know you will all join me in welcoming her among us. We look forward to witnessing in her leadership, her caring demeanor, her deep Catholic faith, and her commitment to education. I am also most confident that Mrs. Szerszen will help build upon the legacy of Saint Bridget School as we move forward seeking innovative ways to carry out our mission of attending “to the spiritual, intellectual, social, emotional, and physical needs of our students within a safe and nurturing environment based upon the Gospel message of Jesus to ‘love one another as I have loved you’ with the goal of empowering each of us to serve the parish and community and make a positive difference in the lives of others.”
I am overjoyed to welcome Mrs. Szerszen to Saint Bridget of Sweden Parish and our School Family! Welcome Mrs. Szerszen!!!
Don’t forget to attend Mass while on vacation this summer! I know many people travel during the summer, but please don’t forget to attend Sunday Mass wherever you are, or daily if you can, as part of your summer experience. If you are traveling a great tool is www.masstimes.org to help you locate a Mass near where you are.
Stay connected with us here while you travel with the use of our ParishApp, Facebook, and Instagram. See the cover of this bulletin for details on how to find us on social media. We want to stay connected with you these weeks of summer whether you are here or away enjoying some vacation time. My prayer for each of us throughout these coming weeks of summer is that we are rejuvenated physically and spiritually so that when the busyness of our Fall schedules starts up again we will have that strength we will need to persevere.
SAVE THE DATES!!!
Family Movie Night…please mark your calendars and plan to join us for an Annual Family Movie Night on Saturday, July 20, 2019! We will be holding an outdoor (weather permitting—if it rains it will take place in the gym) movie night near the field. You can bring your own food and beverages or arrange for us to order pizza. The movie will be Ralph Breaks The Internet. There will be plenty of time for socializing, and for games for our younger parishioners such as kickball or whiffle ball out on the ball field, and more prior to the movie time. Please save the date, plan to join us, and register soon. Forms for registering are at the doors of the Church or you can call the Parish Office.
Parish Picnic…The volunteers are hard at work coordinating our Annual Saint Bridget of Sweden Parish Picnic for Sunday, September 15, 2019. We will, once again, begin with an Outdoor Mass on the field at 11AM, and the picnic will follow. I hope you will ALL mark your calendars and plan to attend with your families. There are some new surprises coming to this year’s picnic, you won’t want to miss it!
R.C.I.A….This past Easter at the Great Vigil of Easter we celebrated one adult baptism and welcomed four additional adults into Full Communion with the Catholic Church. These individuals were part of our Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults program, we call it R.C.I.A.
The R.C.I.A., or the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, is the process by which adults who are not Catholic or even have not been baptized come to learn about the Catholic faith with a desire to enter into full communion with the Catholic Church. Here are some highlights:
It is more than simply a course of instruction.
It is an immersion into a Christ-centered way of living.
It is focused on guiding a person to be a believing, praying, and serving Catholic Christian.
It is accomplished through Scripture study, and group discussions forming the members of the R.C.I.A. to be active and faithful members of the Roman Catholic community of believers.
The R.C.I.A. is a gradual process, for in the wisdom of the Church we have come to learn that conversion is not something to be rushed. A true conversion of mind and heart is only accomplished by the grace of God and through the witness of those who authentically are living out the Catholic faith in their own lives.
Who can join the R.C.I.A.?
Any unbaptized adults who wish to learn more about the Catholic faith with the possibility of becoming Catholic.
Those baptized Christians, from other denominations, who desire to learn more about the possibility of coming into full communion with the Catholic Church.
Those Catholics who were baptized, but have never received their First Holy Communion and have not been Confirmed.
It should be clearly noted that a person who enters the R.C.I.A. makes no obligation to formally join the Catholic Church at this time.
I personally invite anyone who is interested in learning more about the Catholic faith to contact Donna Yatcko in our Religious Education Office at 203-272-6504 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I encourage all parishioners to reach out to a family member or friend who might be interested and personally invite them to consider joining the R.C.I.A. process.
Looking for your input…the Pastoral Staff will continue to meet weekly during the summer to make plans for the coming months. We are looking for your input into NEW programs, events, and activities that you want to see here in our Parish Family. Is there a topic you wish we could have an adult education series on, or an evening discussion on? Is there a particular event you wish us to consider? Any and all ideas will be considered, in prayer, by the Pastoral Staff, as we make plans for the coming months. Please simply write your idea down and drop it in the collection in an envelope marked New Ideas or email your idea to email@example.com. Thank you!
As always, remember to pray for our parish families and ask God’s blessings as we build His kingdom here. Please know that I am praying for you, and I ask for your prayers for me, that together through the intercession of Saint Bridget of Sweden, our Patroness, and united in the Eucharist, we will reflect the presence of Jesus to the world.