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Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Feast of St. John Vianney, Patron Saint of Parish Priests, 4 August

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Pope John XXIII 1 August 1959 on St. John Vianney

Ground broken for new Catholic church in Alton, New Hampshire

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With God and his saints, all things are possible with prayer and devotion

St Katherine Drexel, pray for us!

St Joan of Arc and St Cecilia, pray for us!

Holy Cross Abbey, Canon City, USA

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Yes, straight out of the management text books, the downsizing of a monastery. Pray not just for the monastery but all the parishes that they serve.

Holy Cross, our only hope- Sancta Crux Spes Unica!

St John, Middletown US

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The Chapel of the Divine Mercy which is open all day every day, inspite of a fire.

St Ann's Church, Boston, USA

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St. Ann's parishioners say Bishop Lennon directed pastor to put stop to demonstration

The Diocese seems to have succeeded in shutting down a protest.

Closing the longtime Italian parish of St. Ann's has become a hostile and divisive battle between locals and an administration that has distanced itself from the situation, parishioners say.

Parishioners at St. Ann's claim the animosity has grown so intense between the Archdiocese of Boston and their parish that in June their priest was threatened he would lose his job immediately if he did not keep his flock quiet.

Two longtime parishioners say Auxiliary Bishop of Boston Richard G. Lennon pressured their priest into halting a protest by threatening to throw him out of his church and home.

In June, the parishioners were planning to take seven buses to the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston to attend Mass and protest the closing of their church. But the night before the protest, parishioners Denis Denommee and Ted Rabidou got a phone call from their pastor, the Rev. Michael Bercik, asking them not to go.

According to Rabidou and Denommee, Lennon called Bercik's superior and told him to stop the protest or Bercik would be asked to leave St. Ann's immediately.

Neither Bercik nor his superior, the Rev. Robert Campagne, O.F.M., could be reached for comment. Campagne is the minister of Franciscan friars in the Province of the Immaculate Conception in New York City.

The spokesman for the Archdiocese of Boston could not be reached yesterday.

"(Bercik) took it as a real threat. He was really shook up about it, he begged us not to go. He said it was going to cause all kind of trouble," Denommee said.

Rabidou said he could tell by the tone of Bercik's voice that he was nervous, and then called Campagne to verify the story.

The protest planned for Boston would have been large but peaceful, Denommee said.

Parishioners were planning to quietly attend Mass at the cathedral and then wave signs in support of the friars after the Mass, "nothing disruptive by any stretch of the imagination."

FARGO DIOCESE: Bishop closes five parishes

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And blames the "population drain". Another excuse to be added to the list.