The 40 days of Lent, which begin this Wednesday, are a special time for prayer, charity and spiritual growth. I am listing below the opportunities which our parish is providing to celebrate this season.
* ASH WEDNESDAY – February 18th, a Service of the Word with Ashes will take place at Noon. Evening Eucharist with Ashes will be celebrated at 7:00 p.m.
* GIFT – Wednesday, March 4th, from 6:00 to 8:30 p.m. Avid reader Alice Hinkel will share with us some suggestions of books, authors and various types of literature which have the potential of deepening our relationship with God.
* CASTLE OF THE SOUL – On Sunday, March 8th at 4 p.m. our music ministry Lectors and Liturgical Dancers will present a meditative prayer experience called Castle of the Soul. The program will include texts and songs inspired by St. Teresa of Avila, Mother Teresa of Calcutta, Thomas Merton of St. Francis of Assisi. This program is an effective religious experience to deepen faith.
* HOSPICE: FACTS & MYTHS – On Wednesday, March 11th at 7:30-8:30 p.m., Mary McGuinness from Grace Hospice will offer a presentation in the Banquet Center to provide helpful information on Hospice Care and answer your questions.
* PARISH PASTORAL COUNCIL – INITIATIVE ON ADVOCACY – On the weekends of March 14th-15th and March 21st-22nd, members of our Social Justice Committee and our Parish Pastoral Council will be present after all Masses to explain the Church’s teachings on the role of Advocacy in our Society and to solicit your opinion on what action of Adovocacy should be undertaken by our parish. More information on this initiative will be offered in the upcoming weeks.
* COMMUNAL PENANCE SERVICE ON Wednesday, March 18th at 7:00 p.m., we will hold our Communal Penance Service.
* STATIONS OF THE CROSS – Every Friday of Lent at 7:30 p.m., there will be an opportunity to pray the Stations of the Cross. This Friday, February 20th, the Stations will be led by Fr. George.
* FORBES HOUSE – We will be collecting items for (the Lake County shelter for victims of domestic violence), Project Hope (the Lake County homeless shelter), Birthright and St. Augustine Hunger Center. Tags indicating the items needed for each agency can be found in the narthex. Please use a plastic bag for your items, closing it with the yarn and tag provided. If you do not have your own plastic bags, please help yourself to the plastic bags which are on the table. Return filled bags to the right-hand bin in the food pantry area.
* FOOD PANTRY – This Lent, you can support the pantry by using the specially designed bags to take with you when you shop for food. Simply fill the bag with items, such as peanut butter, jelly, tuna fish, macaroni & cheese, and paper products. This can be returned to the rolling cart in the food pantry. When you return a full bag you can take another one.
* “LENTEN “RICE BOWLS” are also available. Placing change into these bowls on a regular basis during Lent will help feed many in developing countries and support projects promoting agricultural, nutritional, and educational programs to encourage self-sufficiency. When the bowls are filled, they can be returned to the Parish Office.
* COPIES OF THE WORD AMONG US are on the table in the narthex. This booklet includes the complete reading and prayers for Lent and Holy Week together with spiritual articles and daily meditations. The publication can be used as a guide to your spiritual reflection this Lent. Please pick up a copy after Mass.
* Catholics 14 years and older are asked to abstain from meat on Ash Wednesday and all Fridays of Lent. On Ash Wednesday and Good Friday, adult Catholics (18-59 years) are also asked to fast – that is, limit their food to a simple full meal and two lesser meals.
* Finally, we ask your participation in our Lenten Fish Fries. This year we will begin the Fish Fries on Ash Wednesday, February 18th, with a day seating from 11:00 to 1:30 p.m. and an evening seating 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. The day session will offer a reduced price option. The Fish Fries will continue on the Fridays of Lent at the usual 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. time. These Fish Fries are an important fund raiser for our parish, and they are possible only through the generosity of parishioners willing to help with serving and cleanup. Please sign up on the kiosk to help.
Each Lenten season invites us to grow in our faith as we prepare to celebrate the great Feast of Easter. Please consider including one or more of the opportunities above as part of your Lenten observance.
Fr. George Smiga
ASH WEDNESDAY – FEBRUARY 18TH – Liturgical Ministers are asked to sign up on the bulletin board outside of the kitchenette if you are able to minister at the 7:00 p.m. Mass on Ash Wednesday.
SOCIAL JUSTICE/ST. AUGUSTINE – On Sunday, February 22nd, our volunteers will be serving the meal at the St. Augustine Hunger Center. There is a sign-up sheet on the kiosk if you are able to lend a hand.
NOEL FISH FRIES – Again this year there will be Fish Fries on Ash Wednesday, February 18th. Times are 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m. One time through the line for lunch on Ash Wednesday is $8.00 or all-you-can-eat is $11.00. Fridays of Lent (not Good Friday), we’ll serve from 4:30-7:30 p.m.
Pricing on Fridays is $11 for adults, children from 6-12 are $5, and 5 and under are free. Volunteers are needed for serving and cleanup for both Ash Wednesday and Fridays. Sign-up sheets are on the kiosk. You will not receive a phone call – just come at the time you have signed up. Also, Randy needs volunteers who can help set up Fish Fries on Fridays at 12:30 p.m. If you can help, please call the Banquet Center Office at 440-946-6635.
BAPTISM DAY will be held on Sunday, March 8th, from 12:15-3:30 p.m. Parents who plan to present a child for baptism in the next six months, or have already baptized a child and have not previously attended the baptism class, are expected to attend. Please call the Parish Office at 440-946-0887.
SERVERS NEEDED – We are in need of servers for all weekend masses, especially the 5:00 p.m. Saturday evening mass. 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. Why not give it a try? If interested, please call the parish office, 440-946-0887.
HIGH SCHOOL RETREAT – Our high school retreat “Let God Dream for You” will be held February 20th-22nd at Cedar Hills in Painesville. This weekend is open to all high school youth. Registration forms can be found in the kiosk.
YOUNG NEIGHBORS IN ACTION – All high school teens who have completed 9th grade through 12th grade are invited join Prime Time this summer on our annual summer service trip through Young Neighbors in Action. Y.N.I.A is a week-long Catholic service-learning opportunity committed to exploring our Church’s mission in the world while connecting teens to meaningful service opportunities with other young people from across the country. This summer, we will travel to Detroit, MI June 21st-27th. If you would like more information, see the kiosk or visit stnoel.org. Space is limited and deposits are due back by March 30th.
CONFIRMATION – We are updating our Confirmation list. If you are going into 10th grade or older and have not received the sacrament of Confirmation and wish to do so in the upcoming year, please contact Erica Zalar in the parish office.
RED CROSS BLOOD DRIVE – Our next blood drive is scheduled for Sunday, March 1st from 9 a.m. -1 p.m. You can register online at: www.redcrossblood.org. If you would like to help on the day, please call Anthony at the parish (946-1128 x122).
GEAUGA FAMILY FARMS – St. Noel will again serve as a pick-up site for Geauga Family Farms beginning in June 2015. Shares are available in three sizes and can be purchased at: http://www.geaugafamilyfarms.org/. Our partnership with GFF has been quite fruitful over the years giving us accessibility to local, high quality, organic produce throughout the summer and fall. Members can also purchase grass-fed beef, eggs, cheese and baked goods delivered directly to St. Noel for pick-up. Hundreds of parishioners have benefited from this partnership as well as the Amish farmers who are able to maintain their traditional way of life. See if partnering with GFF is right for you and your family.
TWO FEET OF LOVE IN ACTION – The tradition of Catholic Social Teaching recognizes two distinct, but related forms of service. The US Bishops refer to these as the “Two Feet of Love in Action” because we need both to continue moving forward in our mission of building the Kingdom of God. On the weekends of March 14-15 & 21-22, you are invited to attend a brief session after Mass to understand these “two feet” and to help determine the future direction of our social justice efforts at St. Noel. These sessions will happen after each of the Masses and will last about 20 minutes. Your voice is important; please plan to attend. Coffee and donuts are welcome at the sessions!
CEPROSI DONATIONS – Our partners in Nicaragua are excited to be in relationship with us. You can make a donation at the Church office anytime – checks can be made to St. Noel Church with CEPROSI in the memo. Learn about CEPROSI on their facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/search/more/?q=Ceprosi+Nicaragua&init=public. If you are interested in helping this partnership grow, please contact Anthony in the Church office.
NOEL FELLOWSHIP – Meetings are held on Thursdays at 12:00 Noon in the St. Noel Banquet Center Small Hall. Activities are: On February 19th, 12:00 p.m., socializing, meeting; 12:30 p.m. luncheon, menu: cavatelli & meatballs, salad, breadsticks and apple pie. For tickets, call Dick George at 440-942-2445. Cost is $6.00. Deadline for tickets and payment is February 16th. February 26th, Bingo, Birthdays & Anniversaries. Bring something for the Food Pantry and get a 50/50 ticket. Everyone is welcome.
GRIEF SUPPORT GROUP – The ten-parish monthly group will meet at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesdays, starting February 11th at St. John Vianney Church. You are invited to receive the comfort, hope and healing that comes from sharing the common experiences of grief. Call Rita Demarchi for more information and registration at 440-942-0336.
HOSPICE OF THE WESTERN RESERVE WAREHOUSE SALE – Donations are needed for our next sale, Friday, February 20th, 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. and Saturday, February 21st, 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at Hospice of the Western Reserve, 17876 St. Clair Ave., Cleveland. Proceeds support patients and families of Hospice of the Western Reserve. We are accepting gently used indoor/outdoor furniture, other household items, collectibles, framed artwork, and holiday items. To donate items please contact 800-707-8922 ext. 6881.
SING AND PRAISE GOD WITH JOY! – Catholic Renewal Ministries` Traveling Charismatic Mass for February will be held at Divine Word Parish on Friday, February 20th, at 7:00 p.m. The church is located at 8100 Eagle Rd. in Kirtland. Fr. Dave Woost will be the celebrant. Healing prayer teams will be available after Mass for individual prayer. For more information, please contact Fr. Bob Franco at 440-327-2201 or CRM at 440-944-9445. Come and bring a friend!
FINDING GOD IN FILM: AN IGNATIAN FILM SERIES On Sunday, February 15th and 22nd from 5:00-8:00 p.m., John Carroll University’s Dolan Center for Science & Technology will have film & discussion. Reservations are required ([email protected] or 216-407-9470. Free will offering is requested.
SAINT JOSEPH ACADEMY’S ANNUAL GALA – “Celebrate the Academy,” this year celebrates a milestone for Cleveland’s only all-girls Catholic high school – its 125th birthday! The gala is being held on Saturday, February 21st, from 6 to 11 p.m. at the school, 3470 Rocky River Dr., Cleveland. For more information on attending, please contact Geoff Powers, at 216-251-6788 ext. 229 or email [email protected].
NOVENA TO OUR LADY OF LOURDES & ST. BERNADETTE – at St. Mary Magdalene Church, 32114 Vine St. in Willowick. On Wednesday, February 11th – Thursday, February 19th at 7:00 p.m. On Wednesday, February 18th Novena will be after the 7:00 p.m. Liturgy. For more information call the Parish Office at 440-943-2133 or email [email protected].
THE INSTITUTE OF CATHOLIC STUDIES – from John Carroll University is hosting The Augustine Lecture, Thursday February 19th at 7:30 p.m. in the LSC Conference Room. Rev. Michael C. McCarthy, S.J, will be speaking “How Can a Thinking Person Still Believe in God? Suggestions from Augustine”. The lecture is free and open to the public. For additional information, call 216-397-4558.
VITUS SLOVENIAN LANGUAGE SCHOOL BENEFIT BRUNCH – The fundraiser brunch will be held on Sunday, February 22nd from 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 noon in the St. Vitus Auditorium on Lausche Ave. The price for the adult meal is $9, children is $6. For more information call 440-477-7463.
WALKING THE PILGRIM WAY WITH IGNATIUS LOYOLA: LENT…SPIRITUAL EXERCISES…MY JOURNEY – This retreat will invite you to enhance your prayer life by experiencing your Lenten journey through Ignatian Spirituality. Mass and home-cooked lunch are included. Facilitated by Dr. Andy Kereky. Time 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m., on February 16th. Cost is $35. To register contact Jesuit Retreat House at 440-884-9300 or visit www.jrh-cleveland.org.
PROJECT HOPE of CLEVELAND – is searching for a new Director. This part-time position (20-25 hrs/week) reports to the Board of Project Hope. A detailed list of responsibilities can be obtained by emailing (address below) Project Hope. Interested applicants please forward your resume by February 27, 2015 to: [email protected]. Project Hope – Health Outreach for Prevention and Empowerment – serves the St. Clair/Superior and Glenville neighborhoods. 216-391-7557.
SAINT JOHN VIANNEY PARISH PRESENTS their 12th ANNUAL CELTIC BALL – On March 7th, at LaMalfa, 5783 Heisley Rd., time 6:00 p.m. and tickets are $85 per person. The event will have music, food, open bar, door prizes, an Irish raffle, silent auction and much more! For more information or for tickets, call Marty McGinley at 440-975-9364.
JUSTIN MARTYR’S Just in Fun Group – is sponsoring a gambling trip to Presque Isle on March 3rd. The price of the trip is $25 with $35 in free play. Trip includes transportation, 5 hours of gambling time, games, prizes and all gratuities. For additional information contact Cheryl Doyle at 440-942-3391.
CITY OF WILLOUGHBY HILLS – will hold their annual all-you-can-eat Pancake Breakfasts on Sundays, March 1st, 8th and 15th from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Willoughby Hills Community Center, 35400 Chardon Rd., Willoughby Hills. Pre-sale tickets can be purchased at Willoughby Hills City Hall. Ticket prices are Adults ($6 pre-sale, $7 at the door), Children Ages 6-12 ($3.50) and kids 5 & under are free. Breakfast includes pancakes (plain, blueberry & French toast), sausage, applesauce or fruit cocktail, juice and coffee. WH Recreation is sponsoring the March 1st and 8th breakfasts. The WH Lions is sponsoring March 15th. The great annual basket raffle is also planned for this event.