ZENIT—The World Seen From Rome – 9-24-12

 Archbishop John Myers: Marriage in the United States Is Threatened and Undermined
 Head of Newark Archdiocese Releases Pastoral Letter on Marriage

ROME, SEPT. 25, 2012 (Zenit.org).- The subject of marriage has been an area of constant debate in recent years. As election season approaches in the United States, advocates of same-sex “marriage” have increasingly gained more and more influence in politics and the entertainment industry. Those on the other side of the debate have faced criticism, even so far as being accused of bigotry for voicing support for traditional marriage.

The Catholic Church in the United States has not remained silent despite many attempts by supporters of same-sex “marriage” to quiet and discredit them. In spite of many attacks from different fronts, the U.S. bishops have remained steadfast in support of the traditional union between man and woman.

Archbishop John J. Myers of Newark, New Jersey has released today a pastoral letter on the definition, purpose and sanctity of marriage. As head of one of the nation’s largest diocese with well over 1 million Catholics, Archbishop Myers set out to help the faithful “form their consciences” on the sacrament of marriage. Using the writings of philosophers, both religious and secular, the American prelate makes the case for traditional marriage according to the natural law, thus giving a balanced view of the sacrament of marriage through the eyes of both faith and reason.

Archbishop Myers spoke with ZENIT on his pastoral letter and on the state of marriage in the United States.

ZENIT: What prompted you to write the pastoral letter on marriage?

Archbishop Myers: Well, I worked for some time on it because marriage is one of the foundations of any society and, of course, important in the Church.  In our society, it’s being undermined in many ways, both by some government actions, also by cultural pressures and the preferences of people. So, my concern is that people live the mystery of the sacrament of marriage; and also that we have the stability which is required for stability in society and for rearing children properly. So, I was concerned about all those things when I set out several months ago to write the pastoral [letter].

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Men, Join Us for St. Bridget’s 13th Annual Octoberfest!


Men, Join Us for St. Bridget’s 13th Annual Octoberfest!

Want to spend a casual fall afternoon outside, craft-brewed beer in hand, pitching horseshoes, and watching football? Want to meet other men from St. Bridget’s and other parishes? Then join us for this year’s Octoberfest! Hosted by the St. Bridget’s Men’s Ministry, this men’s social event has been a great hit over the years, and one you’ll surely enjoy!

Once again, we’re shipping in those famous brats from Usinger’s of Milwaukee, and serving them up with sauerkraut, potato salad, baked beans, genuine apple strudel, and a hand-picked selection of the best beers in the world! So, “shine your stein” and join us for all the fun and fellowship we can “mustard” up!

Particulars: Sunday, November 4th,

2 p.m. ‘til dark, at the Picnic Pavilion at the Columbian Center, 2324 Pump Road (Third Presbyterian). Cost is $25/person for a great meal and some tasty fest brews!

Call Charlie Giovannetti (ph. 673-8980) to register. Call John McCulla (ph. 342-1112) or Dale Matanic (ph. 240-2862) For more information.

RSVP Now! Bring your pals from other churches or parishes!

Brother Mike’s Suggested Reading 9-24-12

“We have no king but Caesar:” Some thoughts on Catholic faith and public life

+Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap.
John F. Scarpa Conference on Law, Politics and Culture
Villanova University, 9.14.12

 A priest I know does a lot of spiritual direction.  Two of the men he was helping died suddenly this past year, one of a heart attack and one of a stroke.  In both cases they were relatively young men and quite successful.  In both cases they watched Fox News.  And in both cases they had gotten into the nightly habit of shouting at President Obama whenever he came on the TV.  In both cases, the wives believed – and they still believe – that politics killed their husbands.

Read the Complete story:


Commonwealth Catholic Charities Food Pantry

From Brother Dick Willig:  Food Drive for Commonwealth Catholic Charities Food Pantry thanks the Knights for their help with these efforts.

Our St Bridget Church parishoners donated 133 bags of groceries in August to CCC food pantry.  Our support helped to  feed 731 individuals consisting of 405 adults, 326 children and 8 elderly friends and neighbors.  

Now that the cold weather is upon, us many people will be facing  heating expenses – your generous donations of food  is most appreciated by those less fortunate than ourselves.  

Our next food drive will be the weekend of October 14.  Volunteers and the Knights of Columbus will be handing  out empty grocery bags after all masses.   Please do not pass them by. Thank you.

Monthly Meeting Reminder

Brother Knights:

 We have our monthly Council Meeting this Thursday, September 27 at 6:30 in the basement of the Rectory. Please make every effort to attend.

 Please mark your calendars to the 4th Thursday every month and try to make as many of our Council meetings as possible. We hope to implement several social events for the Council (Monday Night Football) so that we can attract new members and make an effort to build on our fraternity as Knights. 

 Please come to help us make our St Bridgets Council a more vibrant organization by attending as many Council meetings as possible.


Resounding 13-2 Board of Health vote affirms common sense standards. 

This afternoon, by a 13-2 vote, the Virginia State Board of Health approved strong permanent regulations on abortion centers, consistent with temporary emergency regulations currently in place.  Most significantly, the provisions approved by the Board today include important building standards that are part of the temporary regulations but that the Board had previously (in June) declined to make permanent. 

Commenting on the Board’s action, Virginia Catholic Conference Director Jeff Caruso observed, “Today’s debate and resounding vote once again affirms that it is a matter of common sense that the abortion industry be subject to reasonable regulations.  Abortion is not health care because it ends lives rather than healing them, but the abortion industry must meet clear safety standards if it is allowed to operate under the guise of health care.  Today’s vote is a huge step forward.” 

The Board-approved regulations now proceed to review by the executive branch.  After that, they will be open to another comment period before the Board takes a final vote next year. 

The Conference especially thanks all pro-life advocates who attended today’s hearing.  Your responsiveness to messages urging attendance was terrific, and your presence was vital and effective.  

The Virginia Catholic Conference is the public-policy representative of the Commonwealth’s Catholic bishops and their dioceses.

Announcing a Human Concerns Ministry Fair at St. Bridget Church

Subject: Announcing a Human Concerns Ministry Fair

 Dear worker in the vineyard of the Lord,

Human Concerns will be distributing a ministry booklet the weekend of September 15/16. The following weekend of September 22/23 we will be hosting a ministry fair out in front of the church (in event of rain it will be in MPH at the school). This will be an opportunity to show case all of our Human Concerns ministries. 

 In this regard we hope to accomplish three things; first is to show the many good works the parish is involved in; second people get to see where their donations go when they support these ministries with the Human Concerns envelope; third encourage folks to volunteer.  

 We will have pop up canopies with tables set up under them so our various ministries can set up a display (which may simply be a sign with the ministry name and someone to answer questions and you can get more complicated from there).  Additionally, we will have Helium Balloons, Candy, Donuts and coffee and the Knights will host a Voter registration to help encourage parishioners to linger after Mass. Perhaps the parish nurses will host a blood pressure check for the day? 

 To make this work we need to come together to put some effort into it.  We will have speakers to begin each Mass talking about a particular ministry for two minutes. 

 I do not think we need every ministry at every Mass.  Let me know which Mass you would like to be at to have part of a table with a sign saying which ministry you are with and answer questions.  We will have ministry booklets for folks to sign up or you may decide to have a simple sign-up sheet with you on the table.  If you have other volunteers you can be at more Masses or even every Mass if you like.  I want to make this as user friendly as possible.


Mass – 5:30 Sat





Names of volunteers at table          

 Will you be able to help with set up Saturday Sept 22 at noon? _____ Yes    _____ No

 Will you be able to help with take down Sunday Sept 23 at 6:30? _____ Yes    _____ No

 Thanks for your help in making our community rich in faith, hope and charity.

Peace, Paul Amrhein

Director for Human Concerns and Pastoral Care

St. Bridget Church, Richmond, VA

(804) 525.7902


As Election Approaches, Virginia Catholic Conference Offers Special Resource to Help Form Conscience For Political Participation

  Civic Responsibility: A Resource for Catholics in Virginia

 Why does the Catholic Church speak on public policy issues—and more importantly, what does it have to say? Moreover, who should participate in this process?

 As a people of both faith and reason, Catholics are called to bring truth to political life and to practice Christ’s commandment to “love one another.” Exploring the principles that can best guide us in that process is the purpose of a resource released today by the Virginia Catholic Conference.

  “Civic Responsibility: A Resource for Catholics in Virginia,” is a two-sided document drawing excerpts from a two-page summary of the U.S. bishops’ November 2007 statement Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship. This resource,in an easy-to-print two-sided format, is now available here on the Virginia Catholic Conference website. It includes seven key themes of Catholic social teaching that serve as a guide as Catholics ponder their role in public policy decisions.

 “Civic Responsibility” is just one of several voter education pieces the Conference will offer this election season. In upcoming weeks, the Conference will release

  • “Know the Positions of the Presidential Candidates,” a side-by-side look at the two major party presidential candidates on 10 issues important to Catholics;
  • a 10-question response chart to the Conference’s survey of Virginia’s two U.S. senatorial candidates; and
  • a pre-election letter issued by Arlington Bishop Paul Loverde and Richmond Bishop Francis DiLorenzo highlighting the importance of many issues, the differences in moral gravity among issues, and the call to participate in the political process throughout the year.

These resources will be available on the Conference website at www.vacatholic.org. Stay tuned!

 Jeff Caruso, Virginia Catholic Conference

8th Annual Oktoberfest – 9/21-23

Don’t miss Oktoberfest at Benedictien Church in the Museum District

Friday-Sunday; September 21st – 23rd, 2012 at Belmond & Hanover Avenue, behind St Benedict Church

FREE ADMISSION with over 30 different flavors of beer, the new Kauffmann Weingarten for wine-lovers, authentic German food, live German music & dance, Christkindlmart shopping village – vendor sales, wholesome family fun!

Proceeds benefit the scholarship programs of St Benedict Church

http//:www.StBenedictOktoberfest.com  for more information.