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January 4, 2011


Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will celebrate Mass to open the year marking the 200th anniversary of the birth of Saint John Neumann, C.Ss.R.

12:15 p.m.
Wednesday, January 5, 2011
National Shrine of Saint John Neumann
(Lower Church of Saint Peter the Apostle Parish)
1019 North 5th Street

January 5th is the Feast Day of Saint John Neumann and is the date on which he died in 1860. The Mass will serve as the official beginning to the Neumann Year being celebrated by his Order, the Redemptorists, and the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

March 28th marks the 200th anniversary of his birth. The birthday will be observed with a special prayer service at the shrine featuring student representatives from all of the 190 schools in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. Simultaneous prayer services will take place in all Archdiocesan schools that day as well.
Additionally, activities are being planned at the local level to take place in various Archdiocesan parishes, schools, and institutions throughout the year in celebration of Saint John Neumann's legacy. The Jubilee will officially close on June 23, 2012 with Mass celebrated by Cardinal Rigali at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul.

Saint John Neumann remains the only male citizen of the United States to become a saint. He served as the fourth Bishop of Philadelphia (1852-1860) and established the first diocesan Catholic school system in the country. In his role as Archbishop of Philadelphia, Cardinal Rigali is a direct successor of Saint John Neumann and was present for his Canonization by Pope Paul VI on June 19, 1977.

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Editor's note: For further information on the life of Saint John Neumann, C.Ss.R, the National Shrine, and the schedule of events for the Neumann Year please visit

* * Media Advisory: With parking extremely limited, kindly park TV vans along Girard Avenue.

Kenneth A. Gavin
Associate Director

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