Several questions have arisen since the announcement that Pope Francis has appointed Bishop Perez as Archbishop of Philadelphia, effective 18 February 2020: Is he still our Bishop? For how long? Who are we getting? Will he be a priest from Cleveland? How long will we be without a bishop? To answer very simply: your guess is as good as mine. I only know that no bishop has been named at this time, and an administrator will likely be appointed in the interim.
The Bishop did share in a letter to us priests:
A few days ago, I was informed by the Apostolic Nuncio over the phone that Pope Francis has chosen me to become the new archbishop of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. I was quite stunned by the phone call and I was glad to have been sitting down at the time. Needless to say, I have mixed emotions about the Holy Father’s decision, but recalling my ordination day promise of respect and obedience to the bishop, this time the Bishop of Rome, I have accepted his appointment. While there is a certain excitement about this wonderful opportunity, I am deeply saddened to be leaving you and the people of our diocese, whom I have truly come to love. After having gotten to know the people and places in Northeast Ohio during my first year, I feel, with your help, we have been making great progress in a number of important initiatives to strengthen our diocese. I know that through your continued dedication to the mission of the Church in Cleveland, the good things we have begun together will come to fruition. Know that you will always be in my heart and in my prayers, and I ask your prayers for me as I begin this new appointment.
Until February 18, we have been instructed to continue to name Bishop Nelson Perez in the Eucharistic Prayer as normal. “During a time of vacancy of the episcopal see, the clause N., our Bishop, is simply omitted.” All parishes have been asked to include the following intercession during this time of transition: For our Holy Father, Pope Francis; for Bishop Nelson J. Perez as he assumes his new duties in Philadelphia; and for the Church of Cleveland that the Holy Spirit will give all leaders a spirit of wisdom and counsel to discern God’s will. We have prayed this petition on Sundays and at Daily Mass.
It was additionally shared with us that when a see becomes vacant, in all churches of the diocese, the Mass for the Election of a Pope or a Bishop should be celebrated at least once. This Mass was celebrated this past Friday morning, on a day when there was no obligatory memorial. I will likely offer it again on future dates when it is permissible.
Since his installation as our eleventh bishop on 5 September 2017, we as a parish community have been pleased to host Bishop Perez on three occasions: twice for priesthood convocations, held every odd year for the priests of the Diocese of Cleveland (3 October 2017 and 21 October 2019) and at my Installation Mass on 30 June 2019. His outgoing, friendly, and unassuming nature will surely be missed by all. I myself will always be grateful as to his appointing me pastor and for his fatherly kindness shown to me at this time of transition.
May we keep him in our prayers as he has humbly requested.
FOOD PANTRY – Did you know we offer toilet paper to all our pantry clients? Paper products cannot be purchased with food stamps, and our neighbors truly appreciate receiving some with each visit. The pantry distributes around 75 rolls per month. Any donations of toilet paper are always welcome! Other items needed are: tuna fish, “Chunky” or “Progresso” soup, peanut butter, and strawberry jelly.
PANCAKE BREAKFAST – Please join us this weekend on Sunday February 9th 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.
FAMILY FAITH FORMATION RESOURCES – Copies of the February 2020 Take Out Magazine are available (one per family) in the kiosk and on the table in the narthex.
HOSPITALITY COMMITTEE – needs volunteers to serve coffee and doughnuts on Saturday at the 5:00 p.m. Mass. The commitment is for once a month. Anyone interested in helping, please call Betty Louis (440) 942-4009 or the St. Noel Office at (440) 946-0887.
St. Noel Concert Series: Benefit Concert for Lake County Homeless Shelter – Join us on Sunday, March 8th at 4:00 p.m. at St. Noel Church for this special concert. The Choir of Hope (Agnieszka Bieniek, director) and the Lithuanian Community Choir Exultate (Rita Cyvas-Kliorys, director), soloists, and an orchestra will present the concert “Gabriel Fauré and Friends.” In part I, you will hear compositions of Gabriel Faure, Ola Gjeilo, and Clause Debussy, and in part II, a beautiful Requiem by Gabriel Fauré. The concert is free and open to the public. A free will offering will be collected, with 100% of it going to support the Lake County Homeless Shelter – Project Hope for the Homeless. A small reception with Lithuanian specialties will be served in the Narthex after the concert. If you can’t come to the concert but still would like to support Lake County Homeless Shelter – Project Hope for the Homeless, you can give a monetary donation or any items from the list below each weekend from February 8 to March 8 in the Narthex. Items needed for Project Hope for the Homeless: gift cards to Giant Eagle, Walmart, and gas stations ($5 and $10 value only); large size shampoo, hair conditioner and body wash; bath towels (new or gently used), 1 gallon zip-loc bags; 13 and 30 gallons garbage bags; coffee (regular and decaf); 8-12 oz cold/ hot cups. For more information please contact Agnieszka (Aga)Bieniek at [email protected]. Thank you so much for your support.
BLOOD DRIVES – Our first blood drive in 2020 is scheduled for February 23rd from 9-1pm in the Banquet Center. Please sign up on the kiosk if you are interested in helping. Register to donate at redcross.org.
HOMILIES ONLINE – Fr. Terry’s written homilies are now available on our website (stnoel.org). Click “Liturgy & Sacraments” to get to the “Homilies” page. Thanks to Janice Kaluza for this service!
AERC GOOD NEWS – Two more students, Matt & Eli, passed sections of the GED exam and should successfully obtain a GED this year. A real big thanks to Donna Prince and Lisa Mileusnich who tutored Matt & Eli. We’re grateful for all our awesome tutors and for all who support the Adult Education Resource Center (AERC). Please pray for Matt & Eli who are extremely happy with their recent success. We’re very proud of them!
REFRIGERATOR NEEDED – A food pantry client is in need of a refrigerator and can pick it up. Please call Anthony if you can help.
RECYCLE OLD RELIGIOUS ITEMS – St. Mary Mission from Lancaster, PA will be in the Diocese of Cleveland the week of March 2nd collecting used religious items that are no longer needed. Items accepted include: vestments, crucifixes, statues, rosaries, chalices (not pottery), medals, relics, prayer books, bibles, linens, candle holders/racks, altar ware, wall hangings/banners, etc. They will not accept: hymnals, furniture, holy cards, and textbooks. Please bring your used items to the parish office. Deadline is March 1st.
2019 HUNGER MINISTRIES @ ST. NOEL – The Food Pantry, Senior Market, and Neighbor to Neighbor Meal, make up the hunger ministries at St. Noel. Here are the numbers for 2019: the Pantry served 1,756 people and distributed 27,714 lbs of food. The N2N meal served 3,109 people and distributed 8,618 lbs of food. The Senior Market served 1,697 people and distributed 37,484 lbs of food. View the full results on our webpage. Our parish makes a difference! Thanks be to God and to you!!
VOTER REGISTRATION & INACTIVE VOTER STATUS – Did you know that after no voting activity in 2 federal election cycles (4 years), a voter, in the state of Ohio, is placed on inactive status? The March primary is fast-approaching and you must be registered by Feb 18th in order to vote. Regaining “active” status or registering to vote is easy. Check your voting status on your county Board of Elections (BOE) webpage. Register to vote online or pick up a registration form in the Narthex and complete it today. We will return it to the BOE for you! Don’t let March go by without having your voice heard.
CATHOLICS CARE. CATHOLICS VOTE – In their statement on Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship, the U.S. Catholic bishops remind Catholics about the call to participate in political life. “In the Catholic tradition,” they write, “responsible citizenship is a virtue, and participation in political life is a moral obligation” (no. 13). In 2013, Pope Francis wrote: “We need to participate for the common good. Sometimes we hear: a good Catholic is not interested in politics. This is not true: good Catholics immerse themselves in politics by offering the best of themselves so that the leader can govern.” Visit www.faithfulcitizenship.org today to read the statement, watch videos, and access other great resources.
HELPING HANDS – Our CRS/Rise Against Hunger event was wonderful!! Over 90 volunteers packed 10,152 meals in about 90minutes. Look for pictures on Facebook and the St. Noel webpage. Thank you to our terrific CRS ambassadors, led by Jed Trombley, for organizing this awesome event. Thanks, too, to all who donated to support Helping Hands. We raised $5,368 and covered all our commitments. Pray for the people of Burkina Faso and all who struggle to meet their daily needs.
COMMONWEAL LOCAL COMMUNITY – Monday, February 24th at 6:30pm in the Resurrection Room. Two articles from the January issue will be discussed. Strange Gods: Idolatry in the twenty-first century and a review of The Enchantments of Mammon: How Capitalism became the Religion of Modernity. A discussion guide is available at the kiosk, and links to the articles are at https://clcnetcleveland.blogspot.com E-mail your interest to Jack Rakosky, [email protected] gmail.com to be on our mailing list.
GREETINGS FROM THE PRAYER SHAWL MINISTRY – The LIGHT of Jesus shines within all of us. Perhaps you can bring LIGHT to someone who is in need of spiritual, physical, or emotional healing by bringing them a Prayer Shawl or Pocket Prayer Square. These items can be picked up free of charge at the parish office during office hours. We are in great need of people to crochet and knit as well as monetary donations to continue our new ministry. Please give prayerful thought to answering our call for help. Come to our next meeting on March 3rd, 11-12:30pm, in the Resurrection Room, to see what we’re all about. For information or to make a monetary donation, contact Candice Minello at 440-336-0991 or by email at [email protected].
ST. NOEL MINISTRY SCHEDULER PRO – All Liturgical Ministers need to log in to MSP to set your availability and preferences by this Sunday, February 9th. The upcoming schedule is for liturgies scheduled February 26th thru May 31st. For those of you who have already done so, we thank you!
SERVERS NEEDED: We are in need of servers for all of our weekend liturgies. Altar serving is open to anyone age 10 (or in 4th grade) and older: kids, teens, adults. Parents can even serve with their children. Anyone is welcome. Serving is a wonderful way to fully participate in liturgy. Why not give it a try? If interested, please call the parish office, 440-946-0887.
EUCHARISTIC ADORATION – We are looking for someone who can come to Eucharistic Adoration on Mondays between 3:00 and 4:00 p.m. Many parishioners are richly blessed each Monday as they spend time before the Blessed Sacrament. 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. If you are free and would like to experience this encounter with Jesus, please call Jan at 440-951-5593 or the church office.
WINTERTIME DAY OF REFLECTION – at Bethany Retreat Center, 13000 Auburn Rd., Chardon (across from NDCL) on Saturday, February 15th from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. “Becoming the Saints, We Are” will be facilitated by Sister Jeanette Brown, SND. The $20.00 donation includes the presentation and lunch. Please contact Sister Jennifer Kramer, SND for further information and to register. [email protected] or 440-279-1143. Please register by February 8th. Limit: 25.
LENTEN SERIES– Bethany Retreat Center Experience the transforming power of the PSALMS as we reflect on what the psalms tell us about God, ourselves and others. 5 Thursdays during Lent: Feb. 27 – March 26, 9:30AM -11:00AM. Facilitated by Sister Mary Theresa Betz, SND spiritual director and retreat director. $25.00 for the series. For further information or to register contact Sister Jennifer Kramer, SND 440-279-1143 or [email protected] Register by February 17.
NOTRE DAME YOUNG ADULT RETREAT – A retreat for young adults in their twenties and thirties: Are you interested in taking time away with God? Perhaps the Encounter: Ignatian Silent Retreat weekend designed to help young adults personalize and deepen their relationship with God is for you! The retreat will be held at Bethany Retreat Center in Chardon, OH. It starts on Friday, March 6 at 7 p.m. and concludes at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, March 8th. Mass is included in the retreat. The cost is $50 and includes private accommodations, meals and supplies. Scholarships are available. For more information or to register, contact Sr. Kelley Rush, SND at [email protected] or 440-241-3124.
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED – Chris Hallum, a local realtor and our parishioner, is looking for adult volunteers to help at a fundraiser benefitting childhood cancer research and UH Rainbows & Children’s Hospital. Volunteers are needed to sell raffle tickets at 1 of 9 pubs in downtown Willoughby on Feb 29, 2020. If interested, please call Chris at 440-840-6710. See the flyer on the kiosk for additional information.
CATHOLIC CEMETERIES ASSOCIATION – FREE MONTHLY GRIEF SUPPORT GROUPS – You are not meant to walk this journey of grief alone. Please join us in our friendly, safe, and comforting groups that meet at 3:00pm on the 3rd Sunday of each month in six of our cemetery office locations throughout the diocese. Find comfort, enlightenment, fellowship. Next meeting is February 16th Topic: “Grief and Lent: Traveling Hand in Hand”. For more details, visit www.clecem.org or contact Rhonda at [email protected] or 216-930-4866.