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PLEASE PRAY FOR:  Alice Fabrey, Tony Perry, Darlene Lenhart, Mary Lou Brandon, Lorraine Penhos, Fran Ray, Ed Thomas, Joe Simko, Ann Jofery, Ed Benedict and Bill Lasche.
   







Fr. Tom Whitman
St. Joseph Pastor






  From the Pastor's Desk
2nd Sunday of Advent 

CHURCH CALENDARS
The church calendars for the year 2019 are available at all the exits. We are grateful to McGonigle Funeral Home for sponsoring these calendars again this year.

BUSTED HALO
One recommendation I might make for those who are into the internet and videos, is the site http://bustedhalo.com. This site has some great updates on the sacraments and other things about our catholic faith. Maybe visiting the videos on this site can provide some answers to questions you may have, and particularly the one on the sacrament of Penance (Reconciliation or Confession) as a way to prepare to celebrate that sacrament, or “Advent in two minutes” is a two minute video on the meaning of Advent.

DIOCESAN NEWSLETTER
Have you subscribed to the Diocese of EriE-news? It’s easy to do and it’s free. To receive your email edition each week, simply visit nwpaCatholic.com, click on the “subscribe” button, and provide a few lines of basic information. Every Monday morning, you’ll receive headlines and photos with links to diocesan, national and Vatican news. You’ll also see a tweet sent out from Bishop Lawrence Persico or from the diocese. Sign up today and stay in the know!

ADVENT BEGINS THIS WEEKEND
Now might be the time to think about what you will do to prepare spiritually for Christmas. Sometimes people attend daily Mass, or at least a few more times during the week, others might read a spiritual book or spend a few more minutes in prayer, others might make sure they spend more time with their families by making time to eat together at least one more time each week, others might donate their time to help a charity at this time of year. Or you might check out the website http://bustedhalo.com as a way to learn some things about your faith or just refresh your memory. (See the article above).

We might reflect on the fact that Advent is the beginning of the church year and thus the time for a new beginning in each of us. What might that new beginning look like? There are times where we think we can’t change our lives because we have become so set in our ways or because of the hurts that others have caused in our past. Advent is a time to realize that God has planted something new in us, and this new thing is the presence of Christ in us. Somehow we need to bring this presence to birth in our own individual way.

Maybe the words of Fr. Anselm Grun can inspire us to strive to bring this Christ to birth in our lives this Advent. “You are not determined by your past. You can begin again today, because you already carry something entirely new within you; the divine child is present in your life and can bring you in touch with what is new and neither spoiled nor depleted in your soul. Trust the new life that is within you!” God invites us in this Advent season to take hold of the goodness that is at the heart of who we are and to bring that goodness out of the darkness and into the light. When our goodness shines forth for all to see there will be great joy for us and for others.

HOLY DAY: DECEMBER 8
Saturday is the feast of the Immaculate Conception of Mary and a holy day. Masses will be Friday at 7:00pm and Saturday at 8:00am. Because evening Mass at 5:15 on Saturday is for the Second Sunday of Advent, it does not fulfill your obligation to attend Mass for the holy day. The Vigil Mass on Friday at 7:00pm does fulfill your obligation for the holy day.

ADVENT RECONCILIATION SERVICES
Advent and Lent are two important times of preparation in our church year. The sacrament of Reconciliation is one of the traditional ways we prepare our hearts for the coming of Christ at Christmas and at Easter. Visit the website http://bustedhalo.com to refresh your memory about this sacrament. Or you might refer to the “MyParishApp” for St. Joseph Parish that gives you a how-to guide, an examination of conscience, and the Act of Contrition right on your phone. To get “MyParishApp” - All you need to do is text APP to the phone number 88202. Then follow the instructions for St. Joseph Parish, Sharon, PA. It is free.

Local Penance Services will be held at:

St. Michael in Greenville at 1:00pm and Immaculate Heart in Mercer at 4:00pm-both on Sunday, December 9
Good Shepherd in West Middlesex on Friday, December 14, at 6:30pm
Beloved Disciple Church in Grove City, Sunday, December 16, at 2:00pm
St. Joseph Church, Tuesday, December 18, at 7:00pm
Notre Dame Church in Hermitage, Thursday, December 20, at 6:30pm

CHRISTMAS MASSES
Masses for Christmas Eve are at 4:30pm, 7:00pm, and Midnight. Mass on Christmas Day will be at 9:30am. I remember last year the 4:30pm Mass was so full people were standing out in the Case Avenue entrance way and could not even see the Mass. I know there are a number of people who just show up at Christmas time for this Mass, but maybe consider one of the other three Masses which have plenty of room and maybe a more spiritual experience of Christmas.

CHRISTMAS COLLECTION
As we have done in the past, we will tithe (10%) of the Christmas Collection to the Prince of Peace Center. Your generosity to this collection will help to support the great work of the Prince of Peace Center. In the past we have people who have come forward anonymously to match what we give to Prince of Peace. So far I have one person who will match what the parish gives to Prince of Peace from this collection.

PARISH COMEDY NIGHT
Mark Friday, January 18, 2019 on your calendar! We will be holding another parish comedy night consisting of dinner, professional comedians with clean humor. These have been wonderful evenings and hope you will consider joining us for this year’s event. Invite family, friends and neighbors. Tickets will be on sale soon – consider them as stocking stuffers for Christmas. TICKETS ON SALE AFTER MASSES THIS WEEKEND AND NEXT WEEKEND – GREAT CHRISTMAS GIFTS!

REFLECTION ON THE READINGS
See the bulletin inserts each week of Advent



   

Mass Schedule

Weekday and Holy Day schedules can be found in the bulletin.

Saturday: 5:15 pm (Vigil)

Sunday: 8:30 am and 11:00 am

Sacraments

Baptism: Baptisms are scheduled by appointment. Class is required for first time parents. Please call the church office to schedule your class. No baptisms during Lent and Advent.

Reconciliation: Saturday afternoons, 4:00-4:30 pm. Confessions at other times by appointment.

Matrimony: By appointment six months in advance.

Sacrament of Holy Orders: Some men fulfill God's call to holiness by serving as priests or permanent deacons. Men, high school age or older, who feel God may be calling them to pursue the Sacrament of Holy Orders should contact our parish priest.

Programs

Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA): Please call the rectory office.

Prayer Line: For intentions, please call 724-342-3456.

Religious Education Program: CCD Grades K-11, at Case Avenue Elementary, Sundays 9:30 am -10:45 am (during the school year).

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