You will remember that the letter sent to Bishop Perez from our parish asked him to use his influence with his fellow bishops to establish a new mechanism, such as an independent oversight group composed of laity and clergy, men and women, experts, victims, and even representatives from other faiths to monitor bishops in their handling of sexual abuse incidents in the Church. The bishops of our country were ready to vote for such reforms at their annual meeting November 12-14. I was stunned, along with many of you, that the Vatican requested that the bishops postpone that vote until after the meeting of bishops this February in Rome. Although I believe that it would have been better to address this issue now, it is important to remember that the request of the Vatican is not a dismissal of the bishops’ program but only a postponement until the sexual abuse crisis can be addressed in a world-wide setting.
In light of the confusion and discouragement that the vote was not taken by the U.S. bishops, I would like to share with you the reflections of our bishop, Bishop Perez, about the USCCB meeting. He says, “I felt a true sense of openness and a strong determination on the part of the bishops to do whatever it takes, including working with outside experts, the laity and other interested parties across the country to develop further actions to strengthen protections against predators and anyone who would conceal them.” Cardinal DiNardo, in his closing statement of the conference recommitted the bishops to (1) establish a single national lay commission to investigate complaints against bishops through a third-party compliance hotline (2) finalize standards of accountability for bishops (3) finalize a protocol for the removal of bishops (4) study national guidelines for the publication of names of those clerics facing substantiated claims of abuse (5) complete the investigations into the situation surrounding Archbishop McCarrick and publish their results. [The full texts of these statements can be found at http://www.dioceseofcleveland.org/a-message-from-bishop-perez-at-the-close-of-the-2018-usccb-fall-general-assembly/.]
Even though I wish the bishops would have been able to act this month, I am encouraged that the bishops are still determined to move forward. Cardinal DiNardo also stated, “Listening is essential, but listening must inform decisive action.” Let us continue to pray for our Church, that in February, that decisive action may take place.
Fr. George Smiga
EUCHARISTIC ADORATION – On Monday, December 3rd the hours for Adoration will be from 1:00 – 6:00 p.m. due to First Reconciliation.
FEAST OF IMMACULATE CONCEPTION MASS – will be Saturday, December 8th at 9:00 a.m. The sign-up sheet for Liturgical Ministers for this Mass are on the bulletin board by the kitchenette. Please sign up if you are able to minister.
SOCIAL JUSTICE COLLECTION – Next weekend, our ushers will be in the Narthex to accept your donations to our Social Justice Fund.
SOCIAL JUSTICE FUND – For October 2018, we collected $991.17. Our expenses for October were:
|Meal at St. Augustine||703.81|
Thank you for your support.
SACRISTANS – are needed to serve for our weekend liturgies. Please contact the parish office if you are interested.
2019 HOSPITALITY VOLUNTEERS NEEDED – The Hospitality Committee needs more volunteers to serve coffee, hot chocolate and doughnuts at all Masses. The commitment is for once every four or five weeks beginning in January 2019. Please call Betty Louis, 440-942-4009 or St. Noel parish office, 440-946-0887 if you are interested in serving.
SIGN-UP FOR YNIA TRIP – This summer, teens who have completed their first year of high school through senior year are invited to join us as we travel to Buffalo, New York from July 7-12. Young Neighbors in Action is more than just a week of doing service. It is a mission experience which engages youth in exploring the call to work for justice while serving those in need. If you are interested, please pick up a letter and registration form in the kiosk. Deposits and registration are due by December 3rd.
ANGEL CHOIR – We would like to continue inviting all young people in grades 1-12 to join us. The Angel Choir rehearsals are scheduled on Sundays between the Masses (10:15-10:45 a.m.) in the Resurrection Room. We hope to see you all. Any questions, contact Agnieszka (Aga) Bieniek at 440-946-1128 x119 or [email protected].
AUGUSTINE CALENDARS – are available for purchase in the parish office for $25 each. Checks are made payable to St. Augustine.
CLEVELAND CATHOLIC YOUTH CONFERENCE – All St. Noel teens in high school are invited to attend the Cleveland Catholic Youth Conference (CCYC) on Dec. 15th at John Carroll University. The day consists of keynote speaker Joel Stepanek, workshops, praise & worship, Mass with Bishop Perez, adoration, dinner, reconciliation, and an opportunity to meet new friends. Feel free to check out their website at http://www.cleyouthconference.org. If you are interested in attending, please contact Kaitlin at [email protected].
NOEL CONCERT SERIES – offers three Christmas concerts:
Sunday, December 2nd at 4:00 p.m. St. Noel Music Ministry will present Rejoice! Rejoice! You will hear our choirs, bell choirs, and invited guests. There will be an opportunity to listen and to sing-along. What better way is there to begin your Christmas celebration than with music and songs proclaimed to the newborn child? This concert is free with a free will offering. Enjoy delicious Christmas goodies right after the concert.
Friday, December 7th at 8:00 p.m. Apollo’s Fire will bring the program CHRISTMAS on Sugarloaf Mountain An Irish-Appalachian Christmas Celebration. A pre-concert talk happens in the Resurrection Room at 7:00 p.m. Afterward, join in a carol or two with the cast while enjoying free hot cider and old-fashioned ginger cake. For ticket information call 216.320.0012 /800.314.2535 ex1 or visit apollosfire.org.
Sunday, December 16th at 4:00 p.m. you can hear CityMusic Cleveland in the program MAGIC WINDS. CONDUCTOR: Stefan Willich and SOLOIST: Frank Rosenwein, Principal Oboe of The Cleveland Orchestra, bring for us compositions of Mozart and Strauss. This concert is free with a free will offering. We hope to see you all.
NOEL BANQUET CENTER – has some dates still available in December for family, friends or company holiday parties. Chef Randy is prepared to give you a great deal on your event. Also, please keep the Banquet Center in mind for weddings, showers, birthday parties, anniversaries, fundraisers, etc. There will be many engagements over the holidays. Please recommend the Banquet Center. We are remodeling during the month of January, so we will be excited to show the new Banquet Center to everyone.
BE PART OF THE 2018 CHRISTMAS PROJECT – Throughout the month of November:
∙ Stop at the table in the Narthex to pick up tags to purchase items for the family baskets. You can take as many tags as you’d like!
∙ Donate $10 gift cards to Target and Giant Eagle.
∙ Make a monetary donation (cash, or checks made payable to St. Noel) that we’ll use to purchase additional gift cards and basket items.
∙ Sign up on the kiosk to assemble, wrap and/or deliver baskets in December.
For more information, contact Sandy Appeldorn (216-926-2489 or [email protected]).
FOOD PANTRY NEEDS – The pantry is in need of the following items: cereal, and spaghetti sauce in jars. You can financially support the pantry through our social justice collections and through the website.
WINTER COATS/JACKETS NEEDED – We distributed over 55 coats at the November Neighbor to Neighbor meal. We will do it again in December and January. Bring any donations to the clothing bin outside the food pantry or to the church office. Our neighbors loved the coats!
READING GLASSES NEEDED – The N2N Resource Room is also looking for reading glasses to distribute at the Neighbor to Neighbor meal. Do you have an extra pair of readers lying around? Bring them to the Church office anytime.
NOEL FELLOWSHIP – Meetings are held on Thursdays at Noon in the St. Noel Banquet Center Small Hall. On November 29th, bingo, birthdays and anniversaries. Bring something for the pantry and receive a free 50/50 ticket. On December 6th & 13th, Bingo. Everyone is welcome! No meetings on December 20th & 27th. There will be no meetings the months of January and February 2019. Meetings will resume March 7, 2019.
IMMIGRATION ACTION NEEDED – The federal government has proposed a rule change to the eligibility requirements of those hoping to immigrate to the USA or change immigration status to something more permanent. Public comment is needed on these proposed changes as they will have a negative effect on families trying to reunite and on those trying to enter the unskilled labor force legally. Deadline for comments is December 10th. See the website (stnoel.org) for information.
DIVORCED OR SEPARATED – and struggling with the holidays? Join us for a special 4-week mini support group for those having difficulty facing the holidays. This program is intended to offer practical advice, support, and the skills to get through the holidays and move forward. Attend one session, all four, or anything in between. We will meet Tuesday evenings from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m., on December 4th & 11th and January 8th & 15th, at St. Noel Church. To register or for more information, call Karen at 440-352-8282 or email: [email protected].
HOSPICE OF WESTERN RESERVE WAREHOUSE SALE – Donations are needed for our next sale on Friday, November 30th, from 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. and December 1st, from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at Hospice of Western Reserve, 17876 St. Clair Ave., Cleveland. Proceeds support patients and families of Hospice of the Western Reserve. We are accepting gently used indoor and outdoor furniture, other household items, collectibles, framed artwork, and holiday items. To donate items, contact 216-255-9090 or email [email protected].
DAY OF REFLECTION – The Diocesan LEAF Ministry is sponsoring a day of reflection “For Those Who Love Someone Who is Incarcerated.” This day, scheduled for December 2nd at the Jesuit Retreat House, is open to all who have a loved one who is (or was) incarcerated. There is no charge for the event. See the flyer on the kiosk for more information.
CARDS FOR OUR NEIGHBORS – The Catholic Commission of Lake/Geauga is sponsoring a prayerful evening on Monday, December 3rd to decorate Christmas cards for those in nursing homes, shelters, and jails in our counties. The evening runs from 6-8 p.m. with a light dinner. An RSVP is required; see the kiosk or website (stnoel.org) for details.