Pastoral Notes by Fr. Will
Fr. John McKenna
I received a letter from the bishop this past week informing me that Fr. John McKenna will be relieved of his assignment at Saint Aidan Parish. He will be full-time ministry with the Sisters of Divine Providence and the Sisters of Charity. His last day with the parish will be this Monday, January 30, 2023. I want to thank Fr. John for all his assistance at the parish over the last year and a half.
Saint Alexis Festival Chairperson Committee
The parish is in need of volunteers to head the Festival Chair. It was recommended to me that we have a committee of 4-5 people to lead the Festival Chair this year. I am looking for volunteers to be a part of this committee. The committee chair oversees the Festival and the other sub-committee chairs. If you are interested, Mr. Reese, Principal of Seelos Academy, and I are considering possible candidates. Please contact Jenna Shanahan at email@example.com.
If a chair person or chair committee is not established by the end of February, we will need to seriously consider cancelling the Festival this year. This is an urgent need.
Kick off Catholic Schools Week
Thank you to the students of Blessed Francis Seelos Academy who are helping to serve at the 10:00 am and 11:30 am Masses this weekend, and to all of the families who support their children. I plan to participate in the events planned, and visit both the K-8 and Pre-K students this week.
Special Feast Days: Please join us this week.
Feast of St Aidan Holy Hour will take place at St. Alexis on Tuesday, January 31 at
7:00 pm with Evening Prayer and Reflection.
The Presentation of the Lord /Candlemas Thursday, February 2: Blessing of the candles at Saint Alexis Church before the 8:00 am Mass and at Saint Alphonsus Church before the first Thursday Mass. Rosary will begin at 6:15 pm followed by blessing of candles, candle light procession and Mass to follow. See graphic on page 11 for details.
Feast of St Blaise Friday, February 3: A blessing of throats will take place after the daily Masses.
From the Desk of Fr. John
Dear Saint Aidan Family,
When a priest is suddenly moved (like myself now) questions often arise. Sadly, so do false answers! So I would like to keep that from happening.
My assignment to the Sisters of Divine Providence was granted to me by Bishop Zubik back in October of 2018. I was assigned not only as their Chaplain, but also to live there on their property in McCandless Twp. The bishop did not realize, however, that the Chaplain’s residence had already been deemed unlivable, and was slated to be torn down as part of the Sister's construction project of a whole new residence for themselves. And so I had to live in a parish, in Bellevue and Emsworth. However, unlike here, I was only "in residence" there. When I moved here it was as "Senior Parochial Vicar". That meant another assignment, in addition to two motherhouses that I was already ministering to on a daily basis. I agreed to see how that would go.
Well, this past October the Sister's new building, The Commons at Providence Heights, officially opened, and they invited me to finally move in. While I have enjoyed working with Fr. Will and all of you here, I must say that having three assignments has become, this past year, a little more than challenging, especially physically. And so I approached the diocese in October with my request. In November I officially submitted it in writing to the bishop. It was scheduled to be dealt with in December, but because of some issues in the clergy office, it was all postponed until two weeks ago. So, while this process has been going on for three months, neither Fr. Will nor myself was allowed to say anything at all until we had an official letter. That did not come until this week. And low and behold it's effective January 30!
Part of my agreement with the diocese is that I will now be on the list of priests available to assist with parish liturgies as needed. Maybe I'll be back to help?! I would welcome that!!
I'll send another note to you from my new desk at The Commons at Providence Heights in a couple weeks to say what's in my heart. For now, I just wanted you to know why I'm leaving so quickly. Thanks, Fr Will, for allowing me to do so.
In God's Love,
Diocesan Church Alive! Pledge Update
We have been a very fortunate and blessed parish community with all of our active participation in the previous diocesan Church Alive! campaign. This campaign has afforded our parish the opportunity to expand and improve our campuses to make gathering and worshiping more inviting for the community.
As most would recall, the Diocese of Pittsburgh engaged an outside consulting firm between the years 2013 - 2018 to manage the Church Alive! Campaign. While many of the campaign pledges were paid in a lump sum, others were paid in installments, receiving periodic invoices from the consulting firm. It was recently brought to our attention that the consulting firm stopped sending invoices after 2018, even to those with outstanding pledge balances. A recent diocesan report shows approximately $1.3 million in uncollected pledges for Saint Alexis Church and $250,000 for Saint Alphonsus Church. If collected, these funds would satisfy 75% of the parish’s outstanding debt of
$2 million and greatly reduce the anticipated drain on the parish cash flow that will result once debt repayments begin in July of this year. In addition, the Saint Alphonsus pledges, if fulfilled, would allow for additional capital improvements at Saint Alphonsus Church property.
As previously communicated to the parish, our world has greatly changed since 2018. We understand that situations or circumstances may be different and that some may have simply forgotten about their pledges. In light of this, We will be contacting those with an outstanding Church Alive! Pledge from the 2013-2018 campaign via both phone and letter, with the hope of reconfirming the prior pledges. We also welcome those without a prior commitment to the campaign to contribute should you feel inclined to do so. Thank you for your understanding while we sort through this process!
Fish Fry Volunteer Sign Up OPEN!
Lent begins on Wednesday, February 22. The fish fry committee has been hard at work planning for a great season!
The volunteer sign up is now OPEN! It can be found here: www.tinyurl.com/23ffvolunteers, or we have a link on our website on the Fish Fry page: www.saintaidanparish.org/fishfry
A small army is needed each week to host our Fish Fry. Many hands are needed, and not just on Fridays! This is a great opportunity for teens to earn many service hours. Please consider helping our parish with our biggest fundraiser of the year.
“Make Us Believers”
Passion Play practices will be on the new side of Saint Alphonsus Church from 6:00 to 8:00 pm, see schedule below. All ages are welcome to be in the Passion Play. We need people to be apostles and townspeople. Please contact Mary Heagy with for more info at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tuesday, January 31
Tuesday, February 7
Thursday, February 9
Tuesday, February 14 maybe?
Tuesday, February 21
Thursday, February 23
Tuesday, February 28
On Being an Apostle on a Mission
Please join us on Monday, February 6 at 6:00 pm as the St. Aidan Men’s Fellowship continues its discussion series on “Re-Evangelizing Greater Wexford.” The discussions will support faithful, lay Christian men in exploring their vocation of being apostles that is entrusted to them by God. The Men’s Fellowship is based upon establishing lasting friendships while acquiring a deeper, practical adult understanding of the Catholic Faith. We also engage in regular fellowship and service-related activities. Our bi-weekly Monday meetings are held at The Ark & the Dove on Babcock Blvd., from 6:00 to 7:30 pm. All men are welcome. For more info, contact email@example.com or Paul Spence at 724-713-8633.
Father Rocky Hoffman of Relevant Radio - February 13
The Men’s Fellowship is pleased to announce that Fr. Frank Hoffman “Fr. Rocky”, Executive Director and CEO of Relevant Radio will be speaking at
St. Alphonsus Church on Monday, February 13 at 7:00 pm. Since 2003, Fr. Rocky has been a regular contributor to the Relevant Radio programs and is a weekly host of the popular show Go Ask Your Father. He has ministered to youth, serving in education since 1996. Fr. Hoffman’s column appears regularly in The Catholic Answer and The Catholic New World. Fr. Hoffman is heard daily on the Relevant Radio Network. Check the parish website or the February 5 bulletin for more details.