By God’s grace I was able to celebrate my 70th birthday this December. In light of this milestone, I have decided to resign as pastor of St. Noel, effective June of 2019. Bishop Perez has accepted my decision and agreed that I can continue my priestly ministry as a Senior Associate in another parish or institution of our diocese. As a Senior Associate I will be able to work fewer hours per week and be free of administrative responsibilities.
The 28 years I have served as Pastor of St. Noel have truly been the highlight of my priesthood. Over the years I have been privileged to work with a succession of talented and committed staff members, many of whom remain personal friends. Year after year I have been humbled by the faith and generosity of parishioners who have given of themselves to bring life and direction to this parish. Even on occasions when some parishioners disagreed with my decisions, I can honestly say that I have always been personally treated with respect.
Bishop Perez will soon begin the process of choosing a new pastor for St. Noel. This will include a consultation with our parish staff, Pastoral Council, Finance Council, and the parish at large. I will keep you informed of this process. Obviously, my resignation will be a major change both for me and St. Noel. Therefore, it is important for us to remember how deeply God has blessed us as a community over the years. In faith we trust that God’s goodness will continue. Let us pray for each other in the upcoming year. I will always remain grateful for the life we have shared and all we have accomplished together.
Fr. George Smiga
COMMUNAL BLESSING AND INVITATION – This weekend, children who are preparing to celebrate First Communion this Easter season will come forward at Mass and receive our prayers and support. We will encourage them to participate in actions of love and service in the upcoming months and to follow the example of those in our community who make that love and service a regular part of their lives. Look for these children, who will be wearing special name badges, and take time to share with them over the weeks to come what your faith means to you. Please keep all of them in your prayers. In this way, we as a community can help prepare these children to grow in their lives of service as Christ’s disciples.
NOEL COLLECTION ENVELOPES – are available for pick up on the table in the Narthex. Each boxed set of envelopes is an entire year’s worth of weekly donations. One box per family please!
For those parishioners who participate in the Catholic Education Fund (C.E.F.) Please stop by the parish office to pick up your C.E.F. envelopes for the coming year.
THE CLEVELAND ECUMENICAL INSTITUTE – is starting its winter programs.
Fr. George Smiga – The Mystery of the Cross:
Exploring the Gospel of Mark.
Eight Saturdays, January 12 to March 2, from 9:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Alan Kolp – Lincoln, Merton, Day and King:
Four Americans who Impressed Pope Francis.
Four Mondays, January 21& 28 and February 4 & 11, from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Additional information can be found on the kiosk or online at ceirs.org.
SACRISTANS – are needed to serve for our weekend liturgies. Please contact the parish office if you are interested.
SENIOR MARKET – Our monthly produce giveaway is moved to the 4th Monday for January & February due to federal holidays. Our January market is scheduled for Monday, January 28th from 2-4 p.m. in the Banquet Center.
AERC OPPORTUNITIES – Our Adult Education Resource Center is looking for volunteers interested in child care and transportation. Success for many of our clients is much more likely if we can assist with their children and help with transportation. Call Anthony if you can help (440-946-1128 x122).
TALENT SHOW – The Parish Spaghetti Dinner is scheduled for Sunday, January 27th at noon. This means another year of first-rate entertainment at the talent show. Any parishioner, including adults, are invited to perform. We’ve had musicians, poets, comics, gymnasts, dancers, singers, cup stackers, checkers masters, and more. Please sign up on the kiosk to register your act!
FOOD PANTRY NEEDS – We are currently in need of peanut butter and jelly. The pantry continues to thrive because of your generosity. Thank you!
LEAF – Our next LEAF meeting is Monday, January 21st at 7:00 p.m. in the Nativity Room. If you have a loved one who is incarcerated, consider attending LEAF (Listening, Empowering, Assisting Families). LEAF is a non-denominational ministry where relatives and friends of those incarcerated can join with others in conversation and fellowship. Meetings are anonymous and registration is not required. Visit www.leafministry.org or call the St. Noel parish office at 440-946-0887 for more information.
PANCAKE BREAKFAST – Mark your calendar for the Pancake Breakfast on Sunday, February 10th from 10:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. in the Banquet Center. Tickets are not required, and a free will donation will be accepted. All proceeds will benefit our Youth Ministry program.
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED FOR PANCAKE BREAKFAST – Teens, middle schoolers, parents, and parishioners, please consider volunteering to work a shift at the Pancake Breakfast on February 10th. Please fill out a volunteer form found in the kiosk or contact Kaitlin at (440) 946-1128 ext. 120 or [email protected].
JAIL MINISTRY – St. Noel is part of a 5-parish team that leads Sunday night communion services in the Lake County jail. We are in need of additional ministers. We always serve in pairs and training is provided. Please contact Anthony if interested (440-946-1128).
DAYTIME RETREAT GATHERING – Join us on Wednesday, January 16th in the Resurrection Room from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. for prayer, sharing and planning. For more information call Fran at 440-625-1228.
COMMONWEAL LOCAL COMMUNITIES – The next Commonweal gathering on Monday, January 28th at 6:00 p.m. in the Resurrection Room will discuss the recent issue on Why We Came. Why We Left. Why We Stay. You do not need to be a subscriber to attend, but you must pre-register. If interested, email your name and parish to Jack Rakosky ([email protected]). Links for coming meeting including podcast interviews with three authors at: http://clcnetcleveland.blogspot.com/
EUCHARISTIC ADORATION – has made a difference in the lives of the men and women who spend time before the Blessed Sacrament on Mondays between 1-9 p.m. Each holy hour that you make in the presence of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament releases his grace and power upon you, your family and your parish. We are looking for an additional person to fill in the 6-7 p.m. time slot. If you are free and would like to experience this, please call Jan at 440-951-5593 or the church office. If you are unable to make a definite commitment, please stop in anytime during Eucharistic Adoration and you will be richly blessed.
NOEL FELLOWSHIP – No meetings during the months of January & February. Meetings will resume on March 7, 2019.
DIVORCED AND SEPARATED – Are you ready for a new year? Join us for this special program intended to offer practical advice, support, and the skills to move forward. We will meet Tuesday evening from 7:00-9:00 p.m., on January 15th at St. Noel Church. To register or for more info: call Karen at 440-352-8282 or email [email protected].
DIVORCE RECOVERY FOR CATHOLICS SUPPORT GROUP – Join us for and eight-week support group designed to meet the needs of those who are divorced or separated. Sessions will begin on Thursday, January 17th through March 7th, from 7:00-9:00 p.m. at St. Gabriel Parish. For more information, call Catholic Charities at 1-800-242-9755 or email [email protected]. There is no charge for this program, all materials are provided, and is open to people of all faiths.
CLEVELAND RETROUVAILLE WEEKEND – is scheduled for January 25 – 27, 2019. This is a Lifeline for Troubled Marriages. Has your marriage become unloving or uncaring – your relationship cold, distant – thinking about a separation or divorce? Are you already separated/divorced but both of you want to try again? Then the Retrouvaille program may help.
RETROUVAILLE, which means rediscovery, is supported by the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland, but it is open to couples of all faiths. This program consists of a weekend experience for couples and six follow up sessions. A registration fee of $150 is required to confirm your reservation. For more information concerning the program, or to register, please call Marce or Liz Gliha at 440-357-6580 or 1-800-470-2230, or go online to www.helpourmarriage.org.