Cardinal Rigali To Preside At Prayer Service In Honor Of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

January 6, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI TO PRESIDE AT PRAYER SERVICE IN HONOR OF
REV. DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will preside and be the keynote speaker at the Archdiocese of Philadelphia's 22nd annual Interfiath Commemorative Prayer Service in honor of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.



Wednesday, January 19, 2005
7:00 p.m.
Saint Thomas Aquinas Parish
17th and Morris Streets
Philadelphia


Cardinal Rigali will be joined by religious leaders from various faiths offering tribute to the life and legacy of Dr. King. The prayer service is sponsored by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia Office for Black Catholics and the Office for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs. Saint Thomas Aquinas Parish is one of the most multi-cultural parishes in the Archdiocese; Sunday Mass is celebrated in Vietnamese, Indonesian, Spanish and English.

###

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Audit Finds Archdiocese In Full Compliance With Bishops' Charter

January 6, 2005

AUDIT FINDS ARCHDIOCESE
IN FULL COMPLIANCE WITH BISHOPS' CHARTER

An audit conducted November 29 through December 2, 2004 found that the Archdiocese of Philadelphia is in complete compliance with all articles of The Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People. The Charter was instituted by the United States Bishops at their 2002 meeting in Dallas, Texas. This audit covered the time period from September 2003 to November 2004 and was commissioned by the National Review Board of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

The Archdiocese announced the results of the 2004 audit in today's issue of The Catholic Standard & Times newspaper. Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, said, "I want to reassure parents we are doing everything possible to protect children and young people. I take this responsibility very seriously. I was confident that the Archdiocese was taking every measure to be in full compliance with the Charter, and I am pleased to see that an independent auditing firm has confirmed what I believed to be true. I want parents to know that I care deeply about the welfare of their children and that, as Archbishop, I will do everything in my power to ensure that those in positions of trust never abuse their authority."

The audit was conducted by The Gavin Group, an independent auditing firm consisting of retired FBI agents. The auditors examined three areas: what the Archdiocese is doing to protect the faithful in the future, what the Archdiocese is doing to promote healing and reconciliation and what the Archdiocese is doing to guarantee effective response to allegations of abuse of a minor.

Protecting the Faithful in the Future - Audit Highlights New Program
A safe environment education program for children begun this year was highlighted in the audit report. Protecting God's Children Program for Students teaches kindergarten through eighth grade students in parish schools and religious education programs about appropriate relationships and boundaries. A high school curriculum is also under development. The Archdiocese has also implemented programs for educators, parents, clergy and volunteers. More than 35,000 people have been trained in these programs in the past two years.

The audit also found that the Archdiocese has clear and well-publicized standards for persons in positions of trust. Background evaluations are required for all Archdiocesan and parish personnel who have regular contact with minors.

Promoting Healing and Reconciliation
Auditors reported that the Archdiocese provides outreach and pastoral care to victims and their families and that there is outreach to all faith communities in which sexual abuse of minors occurred. The pastoral outreach includes a meeting with Cardinal Rigali or his representative if the victims wish. The Archdiocese also has a mechanism in place to respond promptly to any allegation where there is reason to believe that sexual abuse of a minor occurred. The audit reported on the Victims Assistance Coordinators, all of whom have extensive experience in their field. In addition, the audit pointed out that the procedures for making a complaint of abuse of a minor are readily available and are announced periodically. The Archdiocese has not entered into any confidentiality agreements during the audit period.

Guaranteeing Effective Response to Allegations of Abuse of a Minor
The Archdiocese of Philadelphia has reported all allegations of sexual abuse of a minor to public authorities and complies with all applicable civil laws. In all instances, the Archdiocese advises victims of their right to report allegations to civil authorities. The audit also found that there are clear and well-publicized standards of ministerial behavior for clergy and a communications policy is in effect which reflects Cardinal Rigali's pledge to be open and transparent on issues of sexual abuse of children. Cardinal Rigali said, "I wish to assure the faithful that the Archdiocese complies with the standards agreed upon by the bishops and that, with the help of the laity and clergy who are undergoing the training sessions we are providing, we will take any and all steps necessary to ensure the safety of our children and young people."

Editor's Note: To view the 2004 Archdiocese of Philadelphia Audit Executive Summary, please go to www.archdiocese-phl.org.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Area Catholic Schools Join In Relief Efforts For Earthquake Victims

January 11, 2005

AREA CATHOLIC SCHOOLS JOIN
IN RELIEF EFFORTS FOR EARTHQUAKE VICTIMS

Students in schools throughout the five-county Archdiocese of Philadelphia are helping to raise monies to assist in the relief efforts for the earthquake victims in Southern Asia and eastern Africa following the devastating tsunami. Some of the creative events are listed below:

Cardinal Dougherty High School in Philadelphia
Last week Cardinal Dougherty students collected almost $2,000. An anonymous donor contributed $315 and challenged the students to match it. More than $500 was raised in one day. On Friday night the school donated $1.00 from each ticket sold for the home opening basketball games. Other unique ideas are in the works. For more information contact the school president or principal at 215-276-2300.

Father Judge High School in Philadelphia
Father Judge students are contributing part of their lunch money. The program is twofold: (1) students place a portion of their lunch money in large containers near the food line. They deny themselves part of their lunch. (2) ARAMark has agreed to donate a portion of their sales when a student buys a meal. For more information contact the school president or principal at 215-338-9494.

Roman Catholic High School in Philadelphia
At Roman, students had a collection in the homerooms and on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of this week they are having an Auction during the lunch periods to raise additional funds. Some items to be auctioned are - Lunch for a week from a popular street vendor, parking in the faculty lot for a week, prom tuxedos, prom flowers, etc. - should be an exciting event!! For more information contact the school president or principal at 215-627-1270.

Bishop McDevitt High School in Wyncote, Montgomery County
The McDevitt students have come up with several ways to raise money - selling palm tree pins for $1.00 donation at lunch, collection envelopes have been sent to each homeroom asking for donations, collection tins have been placed at the end of the cafeteria lines, a bake sale, collection at home basketball games, and a special Tag Day is being planned -- come to school dressed in sweats for a donation!! For more information contact the school president or principal at 215-887-5575.

# # #




Contact
Marie Kelly
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali Asks For Protection For Indonesians

January 12, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI ASKS FOR PROTECTION FOR INDONESIANS

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, in a letter dated January 7, 2005, asked the Honorable Tom Ridge, Secretary of Homeland Security, to designate the Republic of Indonesia for Temporary Protected Status. The Archdiocese of Philadelphia is home to over six thousand Indonesians. Temporary Protected Status (TPS) would allow Indonesians already in the United States to reside here legally and qualify for work authorization for a certain amount of time. Cardinal Rigali asked Secretary Ridge for a TPS designation of eighteen months (the maximum time permitted) for Indonesia.

In his letter to Secretary Ridge, Cardinal Rigali said, "The recent tsunami in Asia that has caused the suffering and death of countless people will stretch Indonesia's resources to the limit, even with the assistance of foreign aid. Relief aid offered by the United States and other nations is a great encouragement and sign of global solidarity. If Indonesians who are already in this country are allowed to work, they will be able to supplement this humanitarian effort by sending back remittances to their devastated homeland."

Cardinal Rigali also said, "The devastation in Indonesia clearly supports a designation of TPS. This designation should allow for the maximum length of time permitted so that Indonesians in the United States may continue to ease the human suffering in their native land."

The letter to Secretary Ridge is a continuation of Cardinal Rigali's efforts on behalf of the victims of the earthquake and tsunami. He has also asked all 275 parishes of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to hold special collections to support the work of Catholic Relief Services. The Cardinal also celebrated Mass at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Philadelphia on January 5th (the feast of St. John Neumann) to remember those who lost their lives and pray for anyone impacted by this immense tragedy.

###

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Benefit Cultural Show For Indonesia To Be Held

January 13, 2005

BENEFIT CULTURAL SHOW FOR INDONESIA TO BE HELD

The entire Indonesian community of Philadelphia, including Catholics, other Christians and Muslims will sponsor a benefit cultural show on Saturday, January 15, 2005. This evening of solidarity will help to raise funds for the tsunami victims in southern Asia. There will be a presentation with music, an auction and a collection for relief efforts. The event will be in Indonesian with English translations. All are welcome.


Saturday, January 15, 2005
7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Saints John Neumann and Marie Goretti Catholic High School
1736 South Tenth Street
Philadelphia


The Archdiocese of Philadelphia is home to more than 6000 Indonesians. Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, in a letter dated January 7, 2005, wrote to Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge and asked that the Republic of Indonesia be designated for Temporary Protected Status (TPS). This designation would allow Indonesians already in the United States to reside here legally and qualify for work authorization for a certain amount of time.

The letter to Secretary Ridge is a continuation of Cardinal Rigali's efforts on behalf of the tsunami victims. He has also asked all 275 parishes of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to hold special collections to support the work of Catholic Relief Services. In addition, the Cardinal celebrated Mass at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Philadelphia on January 5th to remember those who lost their lives and pray for anyone impacted by this tragedy.


###

Contact
Donna M. Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali Leads Thousands Of Philadelphians In March For Life

January 14, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI LEADS THOUSANDS
OF PHILADELPHIANS IN MARCH FOR LIFE

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will lead approximately six thousand people from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to Washington, D.C. for the March for Life on January 24, 2005. This year marks the 32nd anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision to legalize abortion. Joining Cardinal Rigali are seminarians from St. Charles Borromeo Seminary, high school and college students, as well as parishioners. Several parishes and schools send buses full of participants to this annual event. Media are welcome to cover departures at the following locations:


Monday, January 24, 2005
8:00 a.m. Departure

John W. Hallahan Catholic Girl's High School
311 North 19th Street
Philadelphia

West Philadelphia Catholic High School
4501 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia

Saint Pius X High School
844 North Keim Street
Pottstown, Montgomery County

The group traveling from Philadelphia will meet at 12:00 p.m. on the corner of Constitution Avenue and 15th Street. Prior to the March for Life, Cardinal Rigali will concelebrate the annual Youth Mass which is being held in Washington, D.C.'s sports arena for the second year in a row.

10:00 a.m.
MCI Center
601 F Street NW (at the Gallery Place/Chinatown Metro station)
Washington, D.C.

###




Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Accepts Revised Manayunk School Plan

January 24, 2005

CARDINAL ACCEPTS REVISED MANAYUNK SCHOOL PLAN

Cardinal Justin Rigali has accepted a revised school plan submitted recently by the Regional Vicar, Rev. Msgr. Francis W. Beach, on behalf of the parishes in the Manayunk section of Philadelphia. Saint John the Baptist Parish and Saint Josaphat Parish will remain as individual parish elementary schools. Holy Family, Saint Lucy and Saint Mary of the Assumption Parish Elementary Schools will join together to establish a new Regional Catholic School to be known as Holy Child Catholic School. The new school will be located at the site of the present Holy Family Parish School.

Saint John the Baptist Parish and Saint Josaphat Parish, in conjunction with their Parish Pastoral and Finance Councils, believe they are in a position to provide quality Catholic education in their own parish schools, without the financial assistance of the Archdiocese. They requested approval to alter the original scenario which was submitted by the Steering Committee (the Committee included participation by members of each of the five Manayunk parishes) in November 2004. Under the recent scenario, a new Regional Catholic School would have been formed using three of the five sites with all five of the present parish schools closing. All current, existing schools would have closed and there would have been a rebirth of a regional school which would have used some of the existing facilities.

The School Study Committees and the Steering Committee, with the assistance of Archdiocesan personnel, worked for two years on the difficult task of examining declining enrollment and changing demographics in the Manayunk community. The Steering Committee believed a restructuring was necessary because current enrollment at all five schools combined is only 890 students; compared to 1285 just three years ago. The work of the Steering Committee over the past two years has helped to provide the facts and insights that have led to this outcome.

Cardinal Rigali said, "I recognize and am grateful for the leadership of the Regional Vicar, Monsignor Beach, and the dedication of the members of the Steering Committee as they worked for the best solution for restructuring the five parish elementary schools. After listening to many voices and in view of the lack of consensus with the previous scenario, I have decided to accept the altered plan of restructuring, which I believe is best in this particular situation. It is my hope and prayer that all the faithful in Manayunk will be united in their support of Catholic Education and guided by our Lord Jesus and His Holy Spirit."

###


Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali Accepts Recommendations For School Restructuring In June 2005

January 24, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI ACCEPTS RECOMMENDATIONS
FOR SCHOOL RESTRUCTURING IN JUNE 2005

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, has accepted the recommendations to close Saint George Parish Elementary School in Glenolden, Delaware County and Saint Leo Parish Elementary School in the Tacony section of Philadelphia, effective June 2005.

Cardinal Rigali also accepted the recommendation to establish a new Regional Catholic Elementary School in the Bridesburg section of Philadelphia. Saint John Cantius and All Saints Parish Elementary Schools will consolidate to establish the new Regional Catholic School at the location of the current Saint John Cantius School site. Because of low registrations at the end of the 2003-2004 school year, the students from All Saints School were already welcomed into the student body of Saint John Cantius School.

The Regional Vicars, on behalf of the School Study/Steering Committees made the recommendations after extensive study and consultation concerning the declining enrollments at these schools, the impact on the educational programs and the increasing deficits of each of the schools. Cardinal Rigali said, "Closing a school is always difficult for a parish community and I realize that there is pain even though there is recognition of the necessity for closure. These schools have long and proud traditions. I want to extend my gratitude for all of the hard work and diligence of the Regional Vicars, the pastors and the Steering Committees and assure them of my prayers as they go forward. I pray that all of those involved in seeking to ensure that our children are formed in the faith will trust in the love of Jesus Christ."

Recommendations and Findings
The Saint George Parish School Study Committee based its recommendation on rapidly declining enrollment due to demographic changes in the area. There are only 181 students currently enrolled and just 132 of those students live within the parish boundaries. Since 1997, per pupil costs have increased 110 percent but tuition has only increased 20 percent in order to keep tuition costs within the financial capability of the school parents.

The Saint Leo Parish School Study Committee based its findings and conclusions on a steady decline of enrollment from 370 students in 1999-2000 to 197 students in 2004-2005, despite extensive and creative marketing efforts. The parish school worked to keep tuition affordable for parents. Tuition in 2004-05 for one child is $1950 while the actual cost to educate one student is $3157. The projected enrollment for 2005-2006 is 150 students; the per pupil cost would exceed $4000 per child.

The Steering Committee studying Saint John Cantius Parish Elementary School and All Saints Parish Elementary School offered its recommendation for restructuring because of dramatically decreasing enrollment and increasing costs. These facts led to a temporary solution for the 2004-2005 school year. As of May 2004, All Saints Parish School had only 71 children registered for the 2004-05 school year. Realizing that it would not be possible to preserve the educational integrity of the school and manage the financial challenges the parish would face with such a low school enrollment, the students from All Saints School were welcomed into the student body of Saint John Cantius School.

###








Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Catholic Schools Week January 30 - February 5, 2005 Theme: "faith In Every Student: Catholic Schools"

January 26, 2005

CATHOLIC SCHOOLS WEEK
JANUARY 30 - FEBRUARY 5, 2005
Theme: "Faith in Every Student: Catholic Schools"

Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, along with Catholic schools throughout the nation, will celebrate Catholic Schools Week, January 30 through February 5, 2005. Catholic Schools Week is an annual national celebration of the important role that Catholic elementary and secondary schools across the country play in providing a values-centered education. This year's national theme is "Faith in Every Student: Catholic Schools." Catholic schools are proud of the intellectual, spiritual, moral, physical and social values that are emphasized in their schools.

In the Archdiocese of Philadelphia there are:
" 202 Parish Elementary schools
" 21 Archdiocese High Schools
" 5 Special Education Schools
" Parish elementary school enrollment is 69,225
" High school enrollment is 21,981
" Special Education enrollment is 327

News for the Spring: The 102nd National Catholic Educational Association Convention will be held in Philadelphia, March 29 through April 1, 2005. The NCEA is the largest private, professional education association in the world. Its membership represents more than 200,000 educators serving 7.6 million students at all levels of Catholic education. More than 14,000 delegates and exhibitors are expected to attend.

Celebrating Good News: During Catholic Schools Week, student, parents and teachers throughout the five-county Archdiocese will celebrate with a variety of special religious, social and recreational activities. Following is a list of some of the activities planned.

Sunday, January 30, 2005
Visitation B.V.M. School, 300 E. Lehigh Avenue, Philadelphia
9:00 a.m. - Catholic Schools Week Mass followed by a pancake breakfast and Talent Show

Saint Patrick School, 210 Meredith Street, Kennett Square, PA (Chester Co.)
9:00 a.m. - Catholic Schools Week Mass followed by a Band Concert and Open House

Presentation B.V.M. School, 230 Haverford Road, Wynnewood, PA (Montgomery Co.)
9:45 a.m. - Opening Catholic Schools Week Liturgy with school choir and handbell chimes, followed by continental breakfast and tour of school.

Saint Monica School, 1720 Ritner Street, Philadelphia
10:00 a.m. - Catholic Schools Week Opening Mass - teachers walk in the Entrance Procession. Open House and refreshments follow.

Saint Alphonsus School, 29 Conwell Drive, Maple Glen, PA (Montgomery Co.)
10:15 a.m. - Opening Catholic Schools Week Mass followed by social with coffee and donuts.

Saint Dorothy School, 1225 Burmont Road, Drexel Hill, PA (Delaware Co.)
10:30 a.m. - Catholic Schools Week Mass followed by a 12:00 p.m. Open House with 7th grade performing scenes from Shakespeare's Macbeth.

Monday, January 31, 2005

Saint Anne School, Cedar and Tucker Streets, Philadelphia
'Sports Day' - students come to school dressed in their favorite sport attire

Saints Philip and James School, 721 E. Lincoln Highway, Exton, PA (Chester Co.)
'Puttin on the Hits' lip sync contest

Saint Monica School, 601 First Avenue, Berwyn, PA (Chester Co.)
9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. - Franklin Institute Assembly on Life in Space

Saint Aloysius School, 3rd and Hanover Streets, Pottstown, PA (Montgomery Co.)
1:30 p.m. - Assembly with the Phillies Phanatic and an armed forces representative speaking about the importance of mail for soldiers. Also a flag ceremony.

Saint Monica School, 1720 Ritner Street, Philadelphia
7:00 p.m. - Talent Show 'Celebrating Music through the Decades' sponsored by the Home and School Assoc.

Tuesday, February 1, 2005

Saint George School, 2700 E. Venango Street, Philadelphia
'Pajama Day' - students wear PJ's for today! Also science fair in the lunchroom and this afternoon, forget the American Idol - check out Saint George's Talent Show this afternoon in the Church Hall.

Saint Francis de Sales School, 39 New Road, Aston, PA (Delaware Co.)
7:00 a.m. - Parent Donut Breakfast. During the day students will work on care packages for soldiers in Iraq.

Mary, Mother of the Redeemer School, 1321 Upper State Road, North Wales, PA (Montgomery Co.)
9:00 - 11:00 a.m. - An 'Earth Dome' will be set up in the multi purpose center to educate about caring for the earth God has given us. Grades 5 - 8)

Holy Cross School, 144 East Mount Airy Avenue, Philadelphia
11:00 a.m. - School-wide Assembly - 'The NED Show' (Never give up; Encourage others; Do your best)

Holy Trinity School, Osborne and Stockham Avenues, Morrisville, PA (Bucks Co.)
1:00 - 2:30 p.m. - Students will hold a 'Parade of States' and an all-day Penny Walk for Tsunami victims will be held

Wednesday, February 2, 2005

Saint Anastasia School, 3309 West Chester Pike, Newtown Square, PA (Delaware Co.)
9:30 a.m. - Laser Light Show in the gymnasium

Saint John the Baptist School, 4040 Durham Road, Ottsville, PA (Bucks Co.)
In the morning a Winter Band Concert and in the afternoon relay races, shoot-out and pep rally for all.

Our Lady of Peace School, 200 Milmont Avenue, Milmont Park, PA (Delaware Co.)
10:30 a.m. - an 'Academic Bowl' will be held in the gym and at 7:00 p.m. an 'Internet Safety Program' will be held for the parents

Saint Genevieve School, 1237 Bethlehem Pike, Flourtown, PA (Montgomery Co.)
12:45 p.m. - "Rock USA" video presentation to celebrate our nation.

Queen of the Universe School of Special Education, 2479 Trenton Rd., Levittown, PA (Bucks Co.)
1:00 p.m. - Student 'Talent Show' - encouraging students to have faith in themselves

Saint Albert the Great School, 214 Welsh Road, Huntingdon Valley, PA (Montgomery Co.)
1:00 p.m. - Baskets for Breath - an afternoon of activities to help raise funds for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

Saint Bartholomew School, Jackson and Sanger Streets, Philadelphia
1:30 p.m. - Pajama Day Bingo - older student buddy with younger grades for bingo fun.

Saint Mary Magdalen School, 2430 N. Providence Road, Media, PA (Delaware Co.)
Students will write letters and make cards for soldiers

Thursday, February 3, 2005

Lansdale Catholic High School, 700 Lansdale Avenue, Lansdale, PA (Montgomery Co.)
'The Main Event' - Student Appreciation Day - Boys vs. Girls basketball game and Faculty vs. Faculty Volleyball game.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel School, 225 E. Ashland Street, Doylestown, PA (Bucks Co.)
12:00 - 3:00 p.m. - Students hold a 'Dance-A-Thon' to raise funds for relief of Tsunami victims

Saint Kevin School, 200 W. Sproul Road, Springfield, PA (Delaware Co.)
'Teacher Appreciation Day Lunch' at noon.

Saint Bede the Venerable School, 1053 Holland Road, Holland, PA (Bucks Co.)
7:00 p.m. - Open House - Welcome and band performance. Parents visit the school and meet all the teachers.

Presentation B.V.M. School, Hasbrook Avenue and Old Soldiers Rd., Cheltenham, PA (Montgomery Co.)
7:00 p.m. - Volunteer Appreciation Day - Wine and Cheese - a thank you to the many volunteers - cards made by students.


Friday, February 4, 2005

Saint Cyprian School, 6225 Cedar Avenue, Philadelphia
9:00 a.m. - Students perform in Talent Show

Saint Joseph School, 340 Manor Avenue, Downingtown, PA (Chester Co.)
'Souper Bowl Friday' - All day - for the price of a can of soup, all students may wear the jersey of their favorite Super Bowl Team.

Saint Maximilian Kolbe School, 300 Daly Drive, West Chester, PA (Chester Co.)
10:30 a.m. - Eighth grade students will participate in the second annual Culinary Competition - special treats and many surprises!

Our Lady Help of Christians School, 2420 E. Allegheny Avenue, Philadelphia
12:00 noon - Luncheon to honor all teachers of the 5 Catholic Schools in Port Richmond

Saturday, February 5, 2005

Nativity B.V.M. School, Franklin and Gayley Streets, Media, PA (Delaware Co.)
5:00 p.m. - Alumni Mass in the Church, followed by an Alumni Reunion in the school

Saint Alphonsus School, 29 Conwell Drive, Maple Glen, PA (Montgomery Co.)
6:15 p.m. - Family Bingo Night

Saint Hubert High School for Girls, 7320 Torresdale Avenue, Philadelphia
7:00 p.m. - 6th Annual Student Talent Show

# # #

Contact
Marie Kelly
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Archdiocese Of Philadelphia To Host 102nd Annual National Catholic Educational Association Convention

January 27, 2005

ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA TO HOST
102nd ANNUAL NATIONAL CATHOLIC EDUCATIONAL
ASSOCIATION CONVENTION

Theme: "We the People: Proclaiming Faith and Freedom"


More than 14,000 delegates and exhibitors are expected to attend the 102nd Annual Convention and Exposition of the National Catholic Educational Association in Philadelphia, March 29 through April 1, 2005. Most of the sessions will be held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center and will signal the start of a second century of service to Catholic education.

Schools and parishes in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia are sponsoring a Freedom Parade on the Parkway on Monday evening, March 28th , that features marching bands, a chorus and 5,000 students. On Wednesday, March 30th, a Concert of Excellence featuring student musicians and singers from the Catholic schools in the Archdiocese will be held at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts.

Archbishop John Foley, president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications in the Vatican and a Philadelphian, will present a keynote address. Other notable keynotes are Timothy Shriver, chairman and CEO of Special Olympics; and Sister Mary Rose McGready, D.C., former president and CEO of Covenant House.

Three U.S. cardinals will celebrate liturgies: Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia; Cardinal Edward Egan, Archbishop of New York; and Cardinal William Keeler, Archbishop of Baltimore.

The NCEA convention is open to anyone working in or interested in Catholic education. It features general sessions and liturgies, department meetings, development sessions, technology sessions, presentations and workshops. An integral part of the four-day convention is the exposition, which features the latest in educational equipment and supplies.

The NCEA last met in Philadelphia in 1996. It is the largest private, professional education association in the world. Its membership represents more than 200,000 educations serving 7.6 million students at all levels of Catholic education.

# # #

Contact
Marie Kelly
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Celebrate Mass For Altar Servers

January 28, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI TO CELEBRATE MASS FOR ALTAR SERVERS

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will be the celebrant and homilist for the annual Mass to honor altar servers from Bucks County, Montgomery County and Philadelphia - North Vicariates. More than 1,100 altar servers and their families representing 54 parishes are expected to attend, with 45 priests concelebrating the Mass.


Sunday, January 30, 2004
2:00 p.m.
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia



Music will be provided by parishioners of Resurrection of Our Lord Parish in Northeast Philadelphia, featuring two children's choirs and an adult and youth hand bell choir. Seminarians from St. Charles Borromeo Seminary, Wynnewood, will serve as ushers along with members of Philadelphia-area Serra Clubs, which promote vocations to the priesthood.

Contact
Matthew Gambino
 
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali Celebrates 13th Annual Mass Of Thanksgiving For Teachers Celebrating Anniversaries

February 1, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI CELEBRATES 13TH ANNUAL MASS OF THANKSGIVING
FOR TEACHERS CELEBRATING ANNIVERSARIES

Concluding the activities throughout the Archdiocese for Catholic Schools Week, Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will be the celebrant and homilist at Mass in the Cathedral for teachers celebrating 25 and 50 years in the service of Catholic education. The Mass is being held on

Sunday, February 6, 2005
2:00 p.m.
Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia


One elementary teacher, Sister Francis Annice Lunney, SSJ, is celebrating her golden anniversary. Celebrating their silver anniversaries are: Forty-two elementary teachers/administrators, seven secondary teachers/administrators, and one administrator from the Office of Catholic Education.

The Jubilarians are:

Elementary School Golden Jubilarian (50 years)
Sr. Francis Annice Lunney, SSJ Ascension of Our Lord, Philadelphia

Elementary School Silver Jubilarians
Mrs. Cecelia Aaron Townsend Holy Savior-St. John Fisher, Linwood
Ms. Denise Basile St. Katherine of Siena,
Mrs. Barbara M. Burke Notre Dame de Lourdes, Swarthmore
Ms. Lisa Cancelliere Holy Redeemer, Philadelphia
Mrs. Jennett Feldmayer St. Denis, Havertown
Mrs. Virginia Mary Gannon Assumption BVM, Feasterville
Ms. Sondra Golden St. Martin de Porres, Philadelphia
Mrs. Carol A. Gonglik Our Lady of Calvary, Philadelphia
Ms. Bonnie Gunn St. Cecilia, Philadelphia
Mrs. Kathleen Hagarty Queen of Peace, Ardsley
Mrs. Nancy P. Henneke St. Bede the Venerable, Holland
Mrs. Elaine Hill St. Ignatius of Loyola, Philadelphia
Ms. Janet Hunter St. Cyril of Alexandria, East Lansdowne
Mrs. Madeleine Grace Johnson St. Madeline-St. Rose, Ridley Park
Miss Margaret M. Kane Epiphany of Our Lord, Philadelphia
Mrs. Cecelia Kempter St. Bede the Venerable, Holland
Mrs. Mary Kibe Visitation BVM, Norristown
Ms. Claire Lannutti St. Matthew, Philadelphia
Mr. Christopher Leonard St. Martin de Porres Interparochial, Philadelphia
Ms. Elizabeth Longabucco Our Lady of Good Counsel, Southampton
Mr. Kevin Michael Madison Our Lady of Good Counsel, Southampton
Mrs. Margaret Anne Maguire Ss. Philip & James, Exton
Ms. Bridgid Mahoney Queen of Peace, Ardsley
Mrs. Patricia Maloney Holy Spirit, Philadelphia
Ms. Angela Marano Holy Spirit, Philadelphia
Sr. Ann Mark, IHM St. Cyril of Alexandria, East Lansdowne
Mrs. Carol Martelli St. Joseph, Aston
Ms. Linda Martino Yerkes Our Lady of Good Counsel, Southampton
Mr. Edward J. McCabe Visitation BVM, Norristown
Mrs. Joanne McCann St. Teresa of Avila, Norristown
Mrs. Eileen McDonald St. Mary Magdalen, Media
Mr. Frank Mokriski Our Lady of Good Counsel, Southampton
Mrs. Emilie Murphy Our Lady of Grace, Penndel
Ms. Sheila D. Nichols St. Thomas-Good Counsel, Bryn Mawr
Ms. Susan Polin St. Martin de Porres, Philadelphia
Ms. Marilyn Quattrone Holy Trinity, Morrisville
Mrs. Eileen Shinn-Ross St. Andrew, Drexel Hill
Ms. Ruth Thornton-Payne St. Malachy, Philadelphia
Ms. Mary Anne Weinrich St. Bernadette, Drexel Hill
Ms. Marlene J. Williams St. Martin de Porres, Philadelphia
Ms. Kathleen Wood Holy Savior-St. John Fisher, Linwood
Ms. Teresa B. Zygala Immaculate Conception, Jenkintown

Secondary School Silver Jubilarians
Sr. Anne Brigid Gallagher, IHM Little Flower High School, Philadelphia
Ms. Charmaine A. Gates Archbishop Carroll High School, Radnor
Mr. Theodore Keener Archbishop Wood High School, Warminster
Mr. James Martin Northeast Catholic High School, Philadelphia
Ms. Marilyn J. Matregrano Kennedy-Kenrick Catholic High School, Wyncote
Mr. Michael McArdle Archbishop Ryan High School, Philadelphia
Mr. John L. McCabe Archbishop Ryan High School, Philadelphia

Office of Catholic Education Silver Jubilarian
Dr. Louis P. DeAngelo Director of Curriculum & Instruction for K-12 and Staff Development


Contact
Marie Kelly
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Reconciliation Weekend Highlights Confessions In Archdiocesan Parishes

February 3, 2005

RECONCILIATION WEEKEND HIGHLIGHTS
CONFESSIONS IN ARCHDIOCESAN PARISHES

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia will hold a Reconciliation Weekend for all the faithful February 25-26, 2005. Fifty-five parishes in the Archdiocese's five-county area have been designated to hold prayer services and have numerous priests available to hear confessions both Friday night and all day Saturday. The full list of parishes plus specific times, dates and languages available is on the Archdiocesan home page.

The weekend celebrating the Sacrament of Reconciliation, also known as the Sacrament of Penance, is of special significance this year. Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, has called for events in the Archdiocese to mark what Pope John Paul II has designated as the Year of the Eucharist.

Reconciling one's life to God through the forgiveness of sins and the grace offered through this sacrament helps the believer become better disposed for receiving and adoring Christ's Body and Blood in the Eucharist.

As the Holy Father has said, "The Eucharist thus applies to men and women today the reconciliation won once and for all by Christ for mankind in every age."

The weekend represents an opportunity for all Catholics to experience the mercy of God through Sacramental confession. The Holy Father said in his encyclical on the Eucharist, "If a Christian's conscience is burdened by serious sin, then the path of penance through the Sacrament of Reconciliation becomes necessary for full participation in the Eucharistic Sacrifice."

###





Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Celebrate Mass For Vietnamese Catholics

February 4, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI TO CELEBRATE MASS FOR VIETNAMESE CATHOLICS

Cardinal Justin Rigali will be the celebrant and homilist at a Mass for Vietnamese Catholics celebrating Tet, the Vietnamese new year. More than 800 Catholics are expected to attend the Mass that will feature traditional Vietnamese sacred music.


Sunday, February 6, 2005
11:00 a.m.
Divine Mercy Church
67th Street and Chester Avenue
Philadelphia



The Archdiocese of Philadelphia's Office for Pastoral Care for Migrants and Refugees estimates there are approximately 5,000 Vietnamese Catholics living in the city and four-county area of the Archdiocese.

Contact
Donna Farrell
 
215-587-3747

30th Anniversary Of Operation Rice Bowl Begins On Ash Wednesday

February 7, 2005

30TH ANNIVERSARY OF OPERATION RICE BOWL BEGINS ON ASH WEDNESDAY

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia begins its 30th annual campaign of Operation Rice Bowl on Ash Wednesday, February 9, 2005. The 40 day Lenten program, which began in 1975, encourages parishioners to fast one day a week during Lent. Families place money that would have been spent on meals into a cardboard "rice bowl" to remember those who are poor and hungry.

Funds raised through Operation Rice Bowl are distributed in the Archdiocese and through Catholic Relief Services, which is marking its 62nd year as the official international humanitarian agency of the United States Catholic community. Approximately 12 million United States Catholic parishioners will use the Operation Rice Bowl materials during Lent 2005 as a guide to pray, fast, learn and give. This year Operation Rice Bowl celebrates its 30th Anniversary, as a lenten tradition.

In 2004, the Archdiocese of Philadelphia (292 parishes) raised $249,583. Seventy five percent (approximately $187,192) of the funds raised in the Archdiocese were distributed through Catholic Relief Services in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Those funds were used to support development projects which teach farmers new techniques, bring clean water to communities and provide health and nutrition education to ensure the well being of the most vulnerable community members.

Twenty five percent (approximately $62,391) of the locally raised funds remained within the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. Nutritional Development Services, a department within Catholic Human Services, used these funds to stock local food cupboards and soup kitchens to serve the poor and hungry in the Philadelphia area.

The rice bowls are available from most parishes. In addition to fasting, participants are encouraged to pray and learn about our neighbors who live in poverty around the world and here at home.

###


Editor's Note: For more information about Catholic Relief Services and Operation Rice Bowl, visit www.catholicrelief.org.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Justin Rigali Celebrates Ash Wednesday Mass And Distributes Ashes

February 7, 2005

CARDINAL JUSTIN RIGALI CELEBRATES
ASH WEDNESDAY MASS AND DISTRIBUTES ASHES

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will celebrate Mass and distribute ashes following the Mass on:

Ash Wednesday, February 9, 2005
12:05 p.m.
Cathedral Basilica of Ss. Peter and Paul
18th and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia


Ash Wednesday signifies the beginning of Lent for Christians throughout the world. Lent is the penitential season of prayer and sacrifice from Ash Wednesday through Holy Thursday, in preparation for Easter. Catholics throughout the archdiocese will visit their parish churches to receive the blessed ashes, which are marked in the sign of a cross on the foreheads of the faithful. The symbolic ashes remind the faithful of their mortality.

In the chapel adjacent to the Cathedral, distribution of ashes will take place during the following Masses: 7:15 a.m., 8:00 a.m., 12:35 p.m. and 5:15 p.m.



# # #


Editor's Note: Television cameras will not be permitted in the Cathedral. An audio and video mult-box feed will be provided in the parking lot of the Cathedral. Crews will need a bnc connector and a recording deck or a live truck. Reporters and still photographers will be permitted in the Cathedral but are asked to remain in the area designated for the media.

Contact
Marie Kelly
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali's Lenten Message To The People Of The Archdiocese Of Philadelphia

February 8, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI'S LENTEN MESSAGE
TO THE PEOPLE OF THE ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA

Below is Cardinal Justin Rigali's Lenten Letter communicated to the people of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia on February 5th and 6th. Please feel free to quote from the letter or to print it in its entirety.



Lent 2005

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

These forty days of Lent, which are marked by prayer, fasting and almsgiving, bring us to the threshold of the heart of the Church=s year - the Paschal Triduum. They are days in which we recall with renewed devotion our sharing in the saving death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus.

The Church, in her wisdom and solicitude for us, sets aside these next six weeks to help us prepare to celebrate the Lord=s death and resurrection worthily, to renew our participation in this mystery through our baptism, and to make amends for our sins through penance. The Church invites us to have a true spirit of conversion, renewing our faith in the mercy of God and the power of His sanctifying grace in our lives.

In a special manner, the Church places before us the intimate connection between conversion of life, the Sacrament of Penance, and the Eucharist. Pope John Paul II wrote so beautifully in his recent encyclical Ecclesia de Eucharistia, AThe two sacraments of the Eucharist and Penance are very closely connected. Because the Eucharist makes present the redeeming sacrifice of the Cross, perpetuating it sacramentally, it naturally gives rise to a continuous need for conversion, for a personal response to the appeal made by Saint Paul to the Christians of Corinth: AWe beseech you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God@ [ 2 Cor 5: 20] (Ecclesia de Eucharistia 37).

I wish to assure you and your family of my prayerful support and encouragement during these days of Lent, asking the Lord to give you grace to deepen your willingness to follow Him with an ever more generous heart.







Contact
Marie Kelly
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Welcome Over 900 New Members Into The Catholic Church

February 8, 2005

Cardinal Rigali to Welcome Over 900
New Members Into The Catholic Church

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will preside at the Rite of Election of Catechumens and the Call to Continuing Conversion of Candidates. This marks an important step for adults who have chosen to join the Catholic Church. Three celebrations will take place this weekend for the six Vicariates of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. All of the masses will be held at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter & Paul, 18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia.

Saturday, February 12, 2005
6:30 p.m.
Montgomery County Vicariate
Philadelphia - South Vicariate


Sunday, February 13, 2005
2:00 p.m.
Bucks County Vicariate
Delaware County Vicariate


Sunday, February 13, 2005
6:30 p.m.
Chester County Vicariate
Philadelphia - North Vicariate



During the Rite of Election, Cardinal Rigali will receive and bless 529 candidates (those who have been baptized in other faiths) and 398 Catechumens (those who have not been baptized) from 165 parishes in the Archdioceses. After a reflective and intense period of prayer during Lent, catechumens and candidates will become full members of the Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil Mass on March 26, 2005.


###



Contact
Donna M. Farrell
Director of Communications
(215) 587-3747

Stewards' Alliance To Hold Valentines & Volunteers Day

February 11, 2005

STEWARDS' ALLIANCE TO HOLD
VALENTINES & VOLUNTEERS DAY

The Stewards' Alliance, will hold a Valentines and Volunteers Day at the Cardinal Bevilacqua Community Center. There will be valentine card making, baking and mural painting.

Saturday, February 12, 2005
10:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Cardinal Bevilacqua Community Center
2646 Kensington Avenue
Philadelphia




The Stewards Alliance is made up of young professionals in the Greater Philadelphia area who commit their time and talent for the benefit of Archdiocesan social service agencies and schools.

###

Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Celebrate Mass For Divine Mercy Sunday

February 16, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI TO CELEBRATE MASS FOR DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will celebrate Mass marking Divine Mercy Sunday. He invites all Catholics to join priests and religious in this celebration of the devotion recognizing God's mercy and love.

Mass for Divine Mercy Sunday
April 3, 2005
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia


Catholics will pray to Jesus Christ in several ways, including: adoring His presence in the exposed Blessed Sacrament, which is poignant in the Catholic Church's Year of the Eucharist; confessing their sins and receiving forgiveness; praying a Divine Mercy prayer; concluding their period of prayer before the Blessed Sacrament; and finally celebrating the Sacrifice of the Mass.

Schedule of Events:
12:00 Noon: Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament
12:30 - 2:30 p.m.: Sacrament of Penance
2:30 p.m.: Recitation of the Divine Mercy Chaplet
2:50 p.m.: Benediction
3:00 p.m.: Mass


While praise of God's mercy is a central and ancient practice in the Church, popular devotion to Divine Mercy is relatively new. Sister Faustina Kowalska of Poland noted in her 1931 diaries that Jesus appeared to her and called for greater devotion to divine mercy. Pope John Paul II canonized Saint Faustina in 2000 and announced that the second Sunday of Easter will be given the additional title of Divine Mercy Sunday throughout the Church. The devotion fosters repentance for one's sins, and through the mercy and forgiveness of God, one's closer union with Jesus in the Eucharist.



###

Contact
Donna Farrell
Communications Director
215-587-3747

Archdiocesan High School Students Raise Money For Tsunami Victims

February 16, 2005

ARCHDIOCESAN HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS
RAISE MONEY FOR TSUNAMI VICTIMS

Students in the 21 high schools of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia have raised monies to assist in the relief efforts for the Tsunami victims. The Presidents of the student governments from each of the 21 high schools will gather for a check presentation to Bishop Joseph P. McFadden, Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia on


Monday, February 28, 2005
10:00 a.m.
Cardinal Dougherty High School
6301 N. Second Street
Philadelphia


Funds were raised by the students attending the Archdiocesan High Schools throughout the five-county Archdiocese. Students planned and participated in many creative fund raising efforts such as selling tickets to sporting events, auctions, bake sales and tag days. The donation will be forwarded to Catholic Relief Services, the official international relief and development agency of the Unites States Catholic community.

# # #








Contact
Marie Kelly
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali Approves Establishment Of New Parish

February 21, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI APPROVES ESTABLISHMENT OF NEW PARISH

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, has approved the recommendation of the Steering Committee of Our Lady of the Rosary and Our Lady of Victory Parishes in West Philadelphia to establish a new parish through consolidation. In approving the recommendation to consolidate parishes, a review by the Council of Priests is required before final approval is considered. The schools of the two parishes will also become one new school.

The new parish will be located at 63rd and Callowhill Streets, using the buildings of the present Our Lady of the Rosary site. Parishioners will have an opportunity to offer suggestions for the name of the new parish. Cardinal Rigali will select the name and the new parish will open on July 1, 2005. It is the hope of the Archdiocese that the new parish will continue to make its presence felt in the neighborhood through the establishment of a Parish Outreach Center at the site of the Our Lady of Victory Parish convent.

Our Lady of the Rosary and Our Lady of Victory Parishes face decreasing numbers of parishioners because of demographic changes in the area. The number of parishioners of Our Lady of the Rosary Parish decreased from 1,045 in 1990 to 400 in 2004. During that same time period, the number of parishioners of Our Lady of Victory decreased from 1,347 to 537. The two schools have also faced steadily declining enrollment. As the number of students decreases, the cost per pupil increases. In the 2004-2005 school year, Our Lady of the Rosary Parish School enrollment is 162 students and Our Lady of Victory Parish School is 190.

Cardinal Rigali said, "In this season of Lent we look upon this occasion of the consolidation of parishes with hopeful expectation. There is a feeling of loss, for the parishioners and for me as their archbishop, but we know that from the consolidation will come a new creation, a new parish that will be a font of sacramental grace.

At the same time, it is imperative that the Catholic Church retain a presence in the area of Our Lady of Victory Parish, while the new parish operates at the site of Our Lady of the Rosary Parish. In this way the Church can continue to minister to all peoples, as a wise steward of limited resources. I pray that the new parish will be an effective witness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in West Philadelphia and a new spiritual home for its Catholic residents."

Background


In fall 2003 an ad hoc committee began meetings to gather preliminary information. In spring 2004, a Steering Committee was formed. The Steering Committee solicited the input of parishioners through a November 2004 communique. In addition, "town meetings" were held for parishioners, for other school families and for the schools' faculties. On December 9, 2004, the Steering Committee signed the final proposal. On January 9, 2005, a communique was distributed to parishioners informing them of the final recommendation.

###








Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Don Guanella School Visits Nationally Ranked Villanova Basketball Team

February 23, 2005

DON GUANELLA SCHOOL VISITS
NATIONALLY RANKED VILLANOVA BASKETBALL TEAM

The young men of Don Guanella School will visit Villanova University for a basketball clinic hosted by the nationally ranked Villanova men's varsity basketball team. This annual clinic has taken place since 1985. Don Guanella is an Archdiocese of Philadelphia school in Springfield, Delaware County, for boys with a wide variety of disabilities ranging in age from five to 21.

Friday, February 25, 2005
4:30 to 5:30 p.m.
The Pavilion
Villanova University
Route 320
Villanova, Delaware County



Villanova coach Jay Wright, along with his players, will hand out yearbooks, conduct drills, and sign autographs for the special needs students.

###



Editor's note: For more information, please contact Robert Neely, Activities Director at Don Guanella School at 610-543-1418, Ext. 309.

Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
(215) 587-3747

Archdiocese Of Philadelphia Parishes Raise Millions Of Dollars For Tsunami Relief Effort

February 25, 2005

ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA PARISHES RAISE
MILLIONS OF DOLLARS FOR TSUNAMI RELIEF EFFORT

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia announces parishioners donated more than 2.64 million dollars to the tsunami relief effort. Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, asked parishes in the five-county area of the Archdiocese (Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia Counties) to hold special collections during Sunday Mass following the tsunami that impacted southern Asia and Eastern Africa. Parish elementary schools also contributed to their parish collections.

In addition to financial contributions for the tsunami victims, Cardinal Rigali asked the faithful of the Archdiocese to join with him in prayer. The Cardinal celebrated a Mass at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul on Wednesday, January 5, 2005, to remember those who lost their lives or are suffering in any way due to the tsunami. Almost all of the notes and cards accompanying contributions offered prayers for the victims.

The millions of dollars raised by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia will be forwarded to Catholic Relief Services, the official international relief and development agency of the United States Catholic community. Cardinal Rigali, in a letter to Bishop Robert N. Lynch, Chair of Catholic Relief Services, said, "The enormity of this tragedy touched the hearts of the faithful of our Archdiocese in a singular and deep way. Their prayerful solidarity with those who lost their lives as well as with the countless men, women and children who struggle to rebuild their lives continues each day. Furthermore, their financial response was historic for this Archdiocese."

This is the largest special collection ever taken by the parishes of the Archdiocese but parishioners have demonstrated their generosity many times in the past. Some recent examples include special collections for those affected by the hurricanes in Florida, the Dominican Republic and Haiti and for assistance to the people of Sudan, suffering from civil war.

The twenty-one high schools of the Archdiocese also held fund-raisers to benefit the relief effort. On Monday, February 28, 2004 at 10:00 a.m., student representatives of the twenty-one schools will gather at Cardinal Dougherty High School, 6301 North Second Street in Philadelphia, to present a check representing the funds the high schools have gathered (that total is not included in the $2.64 million Archdiocesan figure).

Editor's Note: Stations should have file video of the Mass celebrated by Cardinal Rigali for the tsunami victims at the Cathedral on Wednesday, January 5, 2005.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Migration Week Mass Honors Immigrant Peoples

March 2, 2005

MIGRATION WEEK MASS HONORS IMMIGRANT PEOPLES

More than 45 national and ethnic groups will be represented at the National Migration Week Mass in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, celebrated by the Most Rev. Robert P. Maginnis, auxiliary bishop of Philadelphia. The Mass will be celebrated at Cardinal Dougherty High School, Philadelphia.

The homilist will be Dominican Father Anthony Dao Chinh Quang. Father Dao, a native of Vietnam, is currently serving as the Director of the Office for Pastoral Care for Migrants and Refugees for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.


Migration Week Mass
Sunday, March 13, 2005
2:00 p.m.
Cardinal Dougherty High School
6301 N. 2nd Street, Philadelphia



The Mass will feature 15 choirs singing in their native tongues. Scriptural readings and intercessory prayers will be read in 11 languages. The procession prior to the Mass will feature representatives from all groups, many wearing typical ethnic attire.

The Catholic Church in the United States honors the immigrant roots of our country and our Church each year with Migration Week celebrations.

The Migration Mass is sponsored by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia's Office for Pastoral Care for Migrants and Refugees. The director is Father William G. Ayres.



###

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Archdiocese Of Philadelphia Hosts 102nd Annual National Catholic Educational Association Convention Theme: "we The People: Proclaiming Faith And Freedom"

March 7, 2005

ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA HOSTS
102nd ANNUAL NATIONAL CATHOLIC EDUCATIONAL
ASSOCIATION CONVENTION

Theme: "We the People: Proclaiming Faith and Freedom"

More than 15,000 delegates and exhibitors are expected to attend the 102nd Annual Convention and Exposition of the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) in Philadelphia, March 29 through April 1, 2005. Most of the sessions will be held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center and will signal the start of a second century of service to Catholic education.

The NCEA convention is open to anyone working in or interested in Catholic education. It features general sessions and liturgies, department meetings, development sessions, technology sessions, presentations and workshops. The NCEA is the largest private, professional education association in the world. NCEA membership represents more than 200,000 educators serving 7.6 million students at all levels of Catholic education.

This will be the largest celebration of Catholic education in the Archdiocese since 1996, the last time the Archdiocese of Philadelphia hosted the NCEA Convention.

Monday, March 28th - 7:00 p.m. "Freedom Parade on the Parkway"
The Freedom Parade features 5,000 thousand students, eight marching bands, a 600 member chorus and a 300 member red, white and blue flashlight brigade. Sponsored by the schools and parishes in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, the Freedom Parade will begin at 7:00 p.m. at 222 N. 17th Street and proceed up the Benjamin Franklin Parkway to the steps of the Franklin Institute. At the Franklin Institute, the chorus will sing the National Anthem and an original song commissioned for the Freedom Parade titled "The Freedom to Dream" (copyright 2005). Music and lyrics were written by Mr. Edward J. Allen Jr., Assistant Principal for Student Affairs, at Cardinal O'Hara High School in Springfield, Delaware County. Students will also present a check representing funds raised by the secondary schools for tsunami relief efforts.

Tuesday, March 29th - Opening Day
9:15 a.m. Opening Ceremonies:
Cardinal O'Hara High School drum line and fanfare will lead a procession of students representing elementary, secondary and religious education programs of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia; many of the students will be in ethnic dress to reflect the diversity of the Archdiocese. Students will offer a welcome to the delegates in fifteen different languages.

9:30 a.m. Archbishop John P. Foley, President of the Vatican Pontifical Commission on Social Communications, will deliver the keynote address. Archbishop Foley is a Philadelphian and former editor of the Archdiocesan newspaper, The Catholic Standard and Times.

11:15 a.m. Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will be the celebrant and homilist at the opening Mass.

Wednesday, March 30th
4:15 p.m. Cardinal Edward Egan, Archbishop of New York,
will celebrate Mass.

7:30 p.m. "Concert of Excellence" - Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, Broad and Spruce Streets, Philadelphia. This concert features more than 500 musicians and soloists in the All-Catholic bands, choruses and orchestras. The program is highlighted by music selections performed by the Archdiocesan Elementary Honors Band, the All-Catholic Secondary Concert Band, the All-Catholic Chorus and All-Catholic Orchestra. This year marks a first for the All-Catholic Orchestra: of its 40-member string section, 16 elementary school musicians proved they were talented enough to join the ranks of the older players.

Thursday, March 31st
9:00 a.m. Keynote Speaker: Timothy Shriver, Chairman and CEO of Special Olympics,
serving 1.4 million Special Olympic athletes and their families in over 150 countries and focusing on acceptance, inclusion and respect for individuals with intellectual disabilities across the globe.

4:15 p.m. Cardinal William Keeler, Archbishop of Baltimore will celebrate Mass.

Friday, April 1st
9:00 a.m. Keynote Speaker: Sister Mary Rose McGeady, former President and CEO of Covenant House International,
an agency dedicated to the care and rehabilitation of street youth.

10:15 a.m. Most Reverend Joseph P. McFadden, Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia overseeing Catholic Education, will celebrate Mass.

###








Contact
Marie Kelly
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Catholic Youth Organization And Philadelphia 76ers Team Up For The 12th Annual Hall Of Fame Awards Dinner

March 8, 2005

CATHOLIC YOUTH ORGANIZATION AND
PHILADELPHIA 76ers TEAM UP FOR THE
12TH ANNUAL HALL OF FAME AWARDS DINNER

The Archdiocesan Catholic Youth Organization in conjunction with the Philadelphia 76'ers will
celebrate the 12th Annual Hall of Fame Awards Dinner on

Wednesday, March 16, 2005
5:30 p.m. Silent Auction - 7:00 p.m. Dinner
8:15 p.m. Awards Ceremony
Springfield Country Club
400 West Sproul Road
Springfield, Delaware County, PA


The purpose of the banquet is to raise funds for the Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) programs and to honor adults who espouse the virtues and values of the CYO and the Catholic Church. The CYO utilizes sports and coaching to develop the spiritual and character formation of young people and help to prepare them for the challenges of today and tomorrow. For more information on the CYO Hall of Fame Awards, call 215-965-4637.

This year's Hall of Fame inductees are:

Tom Gola:
a true legend in Philadelphia sports, Tom Gola represents the very essence of what the CYO has strived to accomplish in its mission of combining sports and faith. Tom attended and played basketball for LaSalle College. In his junior year, LaSalle won the NCAA title. Tom was named MVP and became College Player of the Year. Tom continued his winning ways after college leading the Philadelphia Warriors to the 1956 NBA Championship. This title made him one of only two players to win an NIT, NCAA, and NBA championship (and CYO championship!). Tom also played with the New York Knicks during his NBA career and was named to the NBA All-Pro team five times. In 1956, Tom returned to LaSalle as head coach for two seasons and led them to a number two ranking during the '68-'69 season. Tom continued to show his commitment to the city of Philadelphia by running in the Republican primaries for Philadelphia mayor in 1983. Tom and Caroline are members of St. Cecilia Parish. Tom has received many honors, including being named to the Madison Square Garden Hall of Fame and the Basketball Hall of Fame, and having LaSalle College name its athletic complex the Tom Gola Arena. The CYO is proud that it will now also be awarding the "Tom Gola Humanitarian Award" to an individual who shows the humanity and courage that Tom Gola has shown by his own example.

Frank Corace:a respected businessman, acclaimed athlete and devoted family man are all terms that describe Frank Corace. The Monsignor Bonner graduate won numerous awards in basketball during his high school years. In 1960 alone, Frank was All-Catholic, All City, All State, Delaware County Player of the Year and his team won the Catholic League and City Title Championships. After high school Frank continued to shine at LaSalle College where he once again proved his prowess on the basketball court. Frank continued to play professional basketball from 1964 to 1970 in the Eastern Professional Basketball League in Wilmington and Allentown where he became a player/coach. Frank continued his coaching career at Gwynedd Mercy Academy from 1982-85 and again in 1993-94. In 1991 Monsignor Bonner High School retired Frank's uniform. Frank is now Director at Valley Forge Asset Management Co. where he has been since 1976. He is heavily involved in supporting charitable organizations, including the United Cerebral Palsy Organization. Frank and his wife Jovita have been married 40 years and have three daughters. Michelle, Trish and Colleen as well as three grandchildren, Sean, Quinn, and Shea. Frank and Jovita Corace are members of St. Rose of Lima Parish in North Wales.

Jim White: service to community and church has been integral in the life of Jim White. Whether giving talks at his home parish of St. Katharine of Siena in Wayne or at local elementary and high schools, Jim works with the Pro-Life Union of Montgomery County, Generation Life and Pennsylvanians for Human Life to promote chastity, abstinence and pro-life issues. Jim's faith permeates all facets of his life- professionally and personally. Jim White has generously given his time and financial support to numerous schools, parishes and social service agencies. Jim enthusiastically supports organizations which educate, feed or empower the underprivileged. The family construction business of JJ White, Inc., founded in 1920, is the largest contracting employer in the Mid-Atlantic region. Jim and his employees pride themselves on never having lost a customer due to dissatisfaction Jim and his wife, Megan, are parents to Jim, Peter, Victoria, Christopher and Maura.

Sister Margaret Maura Kirby (Sister Peg): a Religious Sister of Mercy for nearly 30 years, Sister Margaret Maura has demonstrated a commitment to the most vulnerable in our world - people with disabilities, the poor and the young. Catherine McCauley, foundress of the Religious Sisters of Mercy, stated, "if you really love God, you will thus prove your love, for the proof of love is deed-Love of God-and love of neighbor". Sr. Margaret Maura, in deed, embodies the spirit of Catherine McCauley. Early in life in Philadelphia, Sister Peg was instilled with a love of God and responsibility to neighbor by her parents. Her love for those with disabilities grew as teacher and later as principal at St. Katherine Day School in Wynnewood. Sister Peg shared her gifts with the Office for Youth and Young Adults by starting the TODAY Program, an Archdiocesan-wide program focusing on providing social, spiritual and educational experiences for disabled youth. She offered disability sensitivity awareness workshops called "Welcome to My World" to hundreds of groups of all ages throughout the Archdiocese. She coordinated numerous youth and adult conferences locally as well as leading youth groups to World Youth Day. Regardless of the conference, service trip or parish visit, Sister Peg continued to advocate for people with disabilities and raise the bar for inclusion. Currently, Sister Peg is a learning strategies specialist at Mercy Vocational High School and Stewardship Coordinator for St. Timothy Parish. The TODAY Program continues to flourish under Sister Peg's leadership. Her influence on the youth and young adults of the Archdiocese has been profound.

# # #







Contact
Marie Kelly
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Norris Square Senior Center To Host Assistant Secretary For Aging

March 8, 2005

NORRIS SQUARE SENIOR CENTER TO HOST
ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR AGING

The Norris Square Senior Center, sponsored by Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, will host Ms. Josefina Carbonell, the Assistant Secretary for Aging of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Ms. Carbonell will visit with seniors and take a tour of the Center with Maria Frazier, the Norris Center coordinator. Ms. Carbonell will be in Philadelphia to attend the National Conference on Aging.


Thursday, March 10, 2005
12:30 to 1:30 p.m.
Norris Square Senior Center
2121 N. Howard Street
Philadelphia




The Norris Square Senior Center located in North Philadelphia, serves an average of ninety to one hundred Latino seniors each weekday with a variety of programs and activities. Programs include breakfast and lunch, physical fitness and health education programs, a computer lab, arts and crafts, billiards and dominoes, and trips. The Center staff is bi-lingual, English and Spanish. Next to the center is 202 housing for the elderly - 35 apartments for low and moderate-income seniors developed by Catholic Social Services in partnership with Norris Square Civic Association and HUD.

###

Contact
Donna M. Farrell
Director of Communications
(215) 587-3747

Mass To Be Celebrated For Terri Schindler Schiavo At Her Alma Mater, Archbishop Wood High School

March 11, 2005

MASS TO BE CELEBRATED FOR TERRI SCHINDLER SCHIAVO AT HER ALMA MATER, ARCHBISHOP WOOD HIGH SCHOOL

The school community of Archbishop Wood High School, Warminster, will celebrate Mass and pray for Terri Schindler Schiavo, a brain-damaged woman in Florida and a Bucks County native. Auxiliary Bishop Joseph P. McFadden will be the main celebrant, joined by priests of the school and nearby parishes, to lead the students and teachers in prayer. Students will provide music for the Mass. Media are welcome.

Mass for Terri Schindler Schiavo
Monday, March 14, 2005
8:00 a.m.
Main Auditorium
Archbishop Wood High School
655 York Road, Warminster


Approximately 1,200 students and staff of the school will pray for Ms. Schiavo, who is expected to be have essential nutrition and hydration withdrawn from her on Friday, March 18 by order of a Florida court and at the behest of her husband, Michael Schiavo.

Terri Schiavo was a member of Our Lady of Good Counsel Parish, Southampton, and a 1981 graduate of Archbishop Wood High School.

On March 18, the school community will have the opportunity to pray for Ms. Schiavo through adoration of the Blessed Sacrament in the school chapel. Friday adoration is a regular practice at the school. Students have prayed for her in daily morning prayers during the current school year.

###

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali's Statement Regarding The Case Of Terri Schindler Schiavo

March 14, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI'S STATEMENT REGARDING THE CASE
OF TERRI SCHINDLER SCHIAVO

Cardinal Rigali strongly opposes the expected removal of nutrition and hydration from Terri Schindler Schiavo, a severely brain damaged woman in Florida. A native of Bucks County, Ms. Schiavo is a former member of Our Lady of Good Counsel Parish in Southampton, Bucks County, and a 1981 graduate of Archbishop Wood High School, Warminster.

"Americans are watching with concern the plight of Terri Schindler Schiavo in Florida. It is a tragic situation that has grave implications for the future treatment of those who are vulnerable and reliant upon someone else to provide their sustenance and decide the level of medical care they receive. In the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, where Terri Schindler was a parishioner and a graduate of one of our high schools, we watch and pray with particular interest in her case. I urge most strongly that those charged with her care provide life-sustaining nutrition and hydration.

Mrs. Schiavo must continue to receive such ordinary treatments to meet her basic needs until the time they become life threatening or harmful. Removing food and hydration now will amount to a very painful death. It also may hasten the day when anyone deemed not living a life of subjective quality - by whose definition? - may suffer the same fate. This evil, if permitted, will end the life of one woman and place all of us in peril.

Terri Schiavo and all those who rely on others for their basic needs remain worthy of care because of their dignity as children of God. In the Gospel of Life (papal encyclical written in 1995), Pope John Paul II wrote, 'God alone has the power over life and death. But he only exercises this power in accordance with a plan of wisdom and love. When man usurps this power, being enslaved by a foolish and selfish way of thinking, he inevitably uses it for injustice and death. Thus the life of the person who is weak is put into the hands of the one who is strong; in society the sense of justice is lost...'

The Catholic bishops of Florida have strongly urged that Mrs. Schiavo should receive "all treatments and care that will be of benefit to her." I call on the faithful in the Archdiocese to join with me in prayer for Mrs. Schiavo, for her family and for all those charged with her life. I pray she receives the nourishment, hydration and loving care she needs until the Lord of Life calls her to His eternal home."

###


Contact
Matt Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Holy Week And Easter Liturgies Palm Sunday, March 20th Through Easter Sunday, March 28th, 2005

March 15, 2005

HOLY WEEK AND EASTER LITURGIES
Palm Sunday, March 20th through Easter Sunday, March 28th, 2005

PALM SUNDAY MASS - March 20 - 10:45 a.m.
Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul, 18th and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
In celebration of the Lord's entrance into Jerusalem, Cardinal Justin Rigali will bless the palms to be distributed to the faithful. Following the blessing of the palms, the Cardinal will be the celebrant and homilist at the Mass of Passion (Palm) Sunday. (no mult box feed)

HOLY THURSDAY CHRISM MASS -March 24 - 9:40 a.m. Procession/ 10:00 a.m. Mass
Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul, 18th and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Cardinal Justin Rigali is the main celebrant and homilist at the Holy Thursday Chrism Mass, which commemorates the day on which the priesthood was established. During the Mass, Cardinal Rigali will bless the three oils used in the Sacraments: the Oil of Catechumens, used in Baptism; the Oil of the Sick, used in anointing of the sick; and Chrism Oil, used in the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and Holy Orders. (mult box feed)

HOLY THURSDAY MASS OF THE LORD'S SUPPER - March 24 - 5:00 P.M.
Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul, 18th and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Cardinal Justin Rigali is the main celebrant and homilist. This mass commemorates the Last Supper, during which Christ instituted the sacrament of Holy Eucharist. After the homily, following the example of Christ who washed the feet of the apostles at the Last Supper, the Cardinal will wash the feet of twelve seminarians from St. Charles Borromeo Seminary. (mult box feed)

Editor's Note: On Thursday, March 24th at the Chrism Mass and Mass of the Lord's Supper ONLY - television cameras will not be permitted in the Cathedral. An audio and video mult-box feed will be provided in the parking lot of the Cathedral. Crews will need a bnc connector and a recording deck or a live truck. Reporters and still photographers will be permitted in the Cathedral but are asked to remain in the area designated for the media. Cameras are permitted for all other Holy Week events, however, we ask that you call the Cathedral Rectory at 215-561-1313 if you plan to cover.


GOOD FRIDAY - March 25th - 3:00 p.m.
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul, 18th and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Cardinal Justin Rigali is the celebrant and homilist at the Solemn Liturgy of the Passion and Death of Christ. The traditional veneration of the cross, led by Cardinal Rigali, will take place during the liturgy. (no mult box feed)

HOLY SATURDAY EASTER VIGIL - March 26 - 8:00 P.M.
Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul, 18th and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Cardinal Justin Rigali is the celebrant and homilist at the Easter Vigil Mass. The special ceremonies that take place during this Mass are all related to the Resurrection. The ceremonies include: the Blessing of the Fire, the lighting of the Paschal Candle, and the Blessing of the Easter Water. (no mult box feed)


EASTER SUNDAY MASS - March 28 - 11:00 A.M.
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul, 18th and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Cardinal Justin Rigali is the celebrant and homilist at the Mass of the Resurrection. Other Masses at the Cathedral on Easter Sunday are: 8:00 a.m., 9:30 a.m., and 12:30 p.m.
(no mult box feed)


# # #


Contact
Marie Kelly
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Celebrate St. Patrick's Day Observance Mass And March In Parade

March 11, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI TO CELEBRATE ST. PATRICK'S DAY OBSERVANCE MASS AND MARCH IN PARADE

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will be the celebrant and homilist at the Saint Patrick's Day Observance Mass. Concelebrants of the Mass include Bishops Robert P. Maginnis and Joseph R. Cistone; Monsignor John J. McIntyre and Reverend Daniel Mackle, Pastor of St. Patrick's.


Sunday, March 13, 2005
9:30 a.m.
Saint Patrick Parish
20th and Locust Streets
Philadelphia



Following the Mass, Cardinal Rigali will join marchers from over 150 groups in the annual St. Patrick's Day parade.

###




Contact
Donna M. Farrell
Director of Communications
(215) 587-3747

Archdiocese Of Philadelphia Presents "the Freedom Parade "

March 21, 2005

ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA PRESENTS
"THE FREEDOM PARADE "

The Freedom Parade" will inaugurate the 102nd Annual National Catholic Educational Association Convention in Philadelphia, March 29th through April 1st. The parade features more than 5,000 students from Catholic high schools, elementary schools and special education schools. A 600-member chorus, cheerleaders, marching bands and a red, white and blue flashlight brigade will provide lively entertainment.


MONDAY, MARCH 28, 2005
7:00 P.M.
PARADE BEGINS: ARCHDIOCESAN OFFICE CENTER
222 N. SEVENTEENTH STREET
PHILADELPHIA


The Freedom Parade proceeds south on 17th Street to the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. It continues west on the Parkway, around the left side of Logan Circle and out the Parkway to the Franklin Institute.

Marching bands in the line-up are: Cardinal O'Hara High School, Archbishop Ryan High School, St. Helena School Marching Band (elementary), Archbishop Wood High School, Interparochial Marching Band from Chester County, Archbishop Carroll High School, Bishop McDevitt High School and Father Judge High School.

More than 15,000 delegates and exhibitors are expected to attend the 102nd annual Convention and Exposition of the National Catholic Educational Association in Philadelphia. Most of the sessions will be held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center and will signal the start of a second century of service to Catholic education. The theme is, "We the People: Proclaiming Faith and Freedom."

FREEDOM PARADE PROGRAM:

On the steps of the Franklin Institute (A mult-box will be available)


Welcome: Mr. George Sharretts, Director of General Services for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia

National Anthem: Played by the marching bands and sung by the 600 member Freedom Parade Singers

Opening Remarks: Bishop Robert P. Maginnis, Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia and grand marshal of the parade

Tsunami Check Presentation: A student from West Catholic High School, Baraka Bitariho, will make a presentation of a check to Bishop Joseph P. McFadden, Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia, representing monies collected by the students of the 21 Archdiocesan High Schools. The donation will be forwarded to Catholic Relief Services, the official international relief and development agency of the Unites States Catholic community.
There will also be an acknowledgement for Tsunami contributions of elementary schools and special education schools. (This donation has already been sent to the relief effort).

Song welcoming the 15,000 delegates to the NCEA Convention: Chorus will sing the song "The Freedom to Dream," written especially for the Freedom Parade and performed for the first time in public. Music and lyrics were written by Mr. Edward J. Allen Jr. (copyright 2005), Assistant Principal for Student Affairs, at Cardinal O'Hara High School in Springfield, Delaware County. The Freedom Parade singers will be flanked on both sides by 300 students carrying red, white and blue flashlights.

Three Student Speakers: During the school year, students from the secondary, elementary and special education schools of the Archdiocese competed for an opportunity to express what their Catholic education means to them.
Jaison Zachariah, an eighth grade student from Saint Ephrem Parish School in Bensalem will read an essay written by John Harkins, a sixth grade student from Saint Genevieve Parish School in Flourtown. Diane Mockus, a senior from Bishop McDevitt High School, will read an essay written by Kyle Nelson, a sophomore at the school. Jacqueline Lloyd, a student from Queen of the Universe Day Center School of Special Education in Levittown, will share her sentiments on Catholic education.

Remarks: Dr. Thomas F. O'Brien, Superintendent of Schools

Conclusion: The 102nd NCEA Convention is inaugurated. "The Freedom to Dream" will be reprised.

Editor's Note:
Approximate Time Line:
Parade Start at Archdiocesan Office Center 7:00 p.m.
Program Begins on Steps of Franklin Institute 7:45 p.m.
Conclusion of Program 8:20 p.m.











Contact
Marie Kelly
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Archdiocesan Students To Perform Concert Of Excellence

March 21, 2005

Archdiocesan Students to Perform Concert of Excellence

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will welcome multi-talented musicians from Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia at a Concert of Excellence at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, Philadelphia. The concert, in conjunction with the national convention of the National Catholic Educational Association held in Philadelphia March 29-April 1, features soloists and musicians in the All-Catholic bands, choruses and orchestras.

Festivities at the Kimmel Center will open with performances of the Archdiocesan Elementary Jazz Band and the Secondary All-Catholic Jazz Band in Commonwealth Plaza at the Center. The Concert of Excellence will begin with the National Anthem, sung by vocalist William Monahan of Bishop Shanahan High School, Downingtown, with remarks by Cardinal Rigali and other dignitaries.

Coverage of the concert is welcome; however, there are no tickets available for purchase. The concert is sold-out.


Concert of Excellence
Presented by the Students of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia
Wednesday, March 30, 2005
7:30 p.m.
The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts
Broad and Spruce Streets, Philadelphia


The program will feature music selections performed by the Archdiocesan Elementary Honors Band, the All-Catholic Secondary Concert Band, the All-Catholic Chorus and All-Catholic Orchestra. This year marks a first for the All-Catholic Orchestra: Of its 40-member string section, 16 elementary school musicians proved they were talented enough to join the ranks of the older players.

Included in the concert will be solo performances by elementary school pianist Kevin Muchetti of St. Norbert School, Paoli; secondary school pianist Peter Dugan of St. Joseph's Preparatory School; and pianist Joseph Manfredonia joining Christian Bell, both of Holy Ghost Preparatory School in Bensalem, on xylophone.

More than 15,000 delegates and exhibitors are expected to attend the 102nd annual Convention and Exposition of the National Catholic Educational Association in Philadelphia. Most of the sessions will be held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center and will signal the start of a second century of service to Catholic education. The theme is, "We the People: Proclaiming Faith and Freedom."

Media note: The Kimmel Center prohibits tripods and flash lighting for print photographers. For broadcast media, the Center permits tape shot only for news purposes. The first 30 minutes of the performance may be recorded, but only three minutes may be broadcast.

Contact:
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747


###

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali's Easter Greeting

March 23, 2005

Cardinal Rigali's Easter Greeting

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I greet you and your families in the joy of the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, conqueror of sin and death.

Each year the Church invites us to prepare, through prayer and penance during the forty days of Lent, for the renewal of the promises of our Baptism at Easter. We are given the opportunity to recommit ourselves to our Catholic Faith which teaches us that Christ has overcome our sins and death itself. We are filled with hope as we recall the great gift of eternal life given to us and the power of God's sanctifying grace which enables us to live the Gospel faithfully. So great a gift calls forth a response on our part.

In his Apostolic Letter on the Year of the Eucharist, Mane Nobiscum Domine, Pope John Paul II begins with a verse from the Gospel of Saint Luke that we will hear on the Third Sunday of Easter this year: "Stay with us, Lord, for it is almost evening" [Luke 24:29]. This familiar scene of the two disciples traveling to Emmaus, away from the place of our Lord's death, saddened and discouraged, is a moving testimony of the Lord's care and love for His disciples. He walks with them, explaining the purpose of the events of Good Friday. However, it is only in the Eucharist, in the breaking of the bread, that they recognize who He is. Their hearts overflow with joy and renewed hope.

This same Lord walks along with us each and every day of our lives. At times, our discouragement prevents us from realizing that He is with us. This season of Easter is an excellent time for us to deepen our awareness of the Lord's Eucharistic presence through some concrete action. I encourage you to renew your commitment to the celebration of the Eucharist on Sundays and holydays of obligation. The practice of making a visit to our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament is highly encouraged. Many parishes are blessed with the practice of Eucharistic adoration which is a time honored practice in the Church of expressing our love for the Lord Jesus. In some manner, use these important days of the Easter season to deepen your appreciation for the Lord's presence in the Eucharist and to draw near to Him who has drawn so close to you.

I greet you all in the love of the Christ Jesus.

Sincerely yours,


Cardinal Justin Rigali
Archbishop of Philadelphia

Contact
 
 
 

Opening Day Of 102nd Annual National Catholic Educational Association Convention

March 28, 2005

OPENING DAY OF 102nd ANNUAL NATIONAL CATHOLIC EDUCATIONAL ASSOCIATION CONVENTION

Beginning Tuesday, March 29th, more than 15,000 delegates and exhibitors will attend the 102nd Annual Convention and Exposition of the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) in Philadelphia. Most of the sessions will be held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center and will signal the start of a second century of service to Catholic Education.

Tuesday, March 29th - Opening Day


9:15 a.m. Opening Ceremonies: Cardinal O'Hara High School drum line and fanfare will lead a procession of students representing elementary, secondary and religious education programs of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia; many of the students will be in ethnic dress to reflect the diversity of the Archdiocese. Students will offer a welcome to the delegates in ten different languages.


9:30 a.m. Archbishop John P. Foley, President of the Vatican Pontifical Council on Social Communications, will deliver the keynote address. Archbishop Foley is a Philadelphian and former editor of the Archdiocesan newspaper, The Catholic Standard and Times.


11:15 a.m. Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will be the celebrant and homilist at the opening Mass.
12:45 p.m. Cardinal Rigali presents awards to several local Philadelphia recipients.


1:30 p.m. Press Briefing: Knights of Columbus, Announce monies to Catholic educators to help strengthen Catholic inner-city schools. Announcement will be made by Mr. Carl Anderson, Supreme Knight and Mr. Michael Guerra, NCEA President.

2:00 p.m. Press Briefing: Archbishop John P. Foley

Note: All press briefings are located in NCEA Press Room 304, Pennsylvania Convention Center





Wednesday, March 30th


4:15 p.m. Cardinal Edward Egan, Archbishop of New York, will celebrate Mass.

7:30 p.m. "Concert of Excellence" - Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, Broad and Spruce Streets, Philadelphia. This concert features more than 500 musicians and soloists in the All-Catholic bands, choruses and orchestras. The program is highlighted by music selections performed by the Archdiocesan Elementary Honors Band, the All-Catholic Secondary Concert Band, the All-Catholic Chorus and All-Catholic Orchestra. This year marks a first for the All-Catholic Orchestra: of its 40-member string section, 16 elementary school musicians proved they were talented enough to join the ranks of the older players.

Thursday, March 31st


9:00 a.m. Keynote Speaker: Timothy Shriver, Chairman and CEO of Special Olympics, serving 1.4 million Special Olympic athletes and their families in over 150 countries and focusing on acceptance, inclusion and respect for individuals with intellectual disabilities across the globe.

4:15 p.m. Cardinal William Keeler, Archbishop of Baltimore will celebrate Mass.

Friday, April 1st


9:00 a.m. Keynote Speaker: Sister Mary Rose McGeady, former President and CEO of Covenant House International, an agency dedicated to the care and rehabilitation of street youth.

10:15 a.m. Most Reverend Joseph P. McFadden, Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia overseeing Catholic Education, will celebrate Mass.

The NCEA convention is open to anyone working in or interested in Catholic education. It features general sessions and liturgies, department meetings, development sessions, technology sessions, presentations and workshops. The NCEA is the largest private, professional education association in the world. NCEA membership represents more than 200,000 educators serving 7.6 million students at all levels of Catholic Education.

This will be the largest celebration of Catholic education in the Archdiocese since 1996, the last time the Archdiocese of Philadelphia hosted the NCEA Convention.


###

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
(215) 587-3747

Cardinal Rigali Media Availability

March 31, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI MEDIA AVAILABILITY

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will be available to the media to discuss the tragic death of Terri Schindler Schiavo.



Thursday, March 31, 2005
2:00 p.m.
Rectory
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
1723 Race Street
Philadelphia




Mrs. Schiavo was a former member of Our Lady of Good Counsel Parish in Southampton, Bucks County and a 1981 graduate of Archbishop Wood High School in Warminster.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Justin Rigali Archbishop Of Philadelphia Statement Regarding The Death Of Terri Schindler Schiavo

March 31, 2005

CARDINAL JUSTIN RIGALI
ARCHBISHOP OF PHILADELPHIA

STATEMENT REGARDING THE DEATH OF TERRI SCHINDLER SCHIAVO

Cardinal Rigali offers prayers and condolences to the family of Terri Schindler Schiavo upon her death, following the removal of nutrition and hydration. She was a former member of Our Lady of Good Counsel Parish in Southampton, Bucks County, and a 1981 graduate of Archbishop Wood High School, Warminster.

The death of Terri Schindler Schiavo has inspired the sympathy of millions of Americans. I offer my own condolences to the Schindler and Schiavo families. Although Terri Schiavo's death is an occasion for sadness for her family and loved ones, we are hopeful that she will share in the eternal life won by Jesus Christ through His Resurrection and offered to those who believe in Him.

Her medical condition prior to her death reminded us of the fragile character of life and our responsibility to care for one another in love. This responsibility is especially poignant when loved ones become incapacitated.

All human beings, regardless of their condition, are entitled to receive ordinary medical treatment, including nutrition and hydration, to meet their basic needs until the time that this treatment becomes burdensome, dangerous or disproportionate to the expected outcome.
In the case of Terri Schiavo the termination of nutrition and hydration resulted directly in her death. We can now foresee the day when anyone whose quality of life is contested may suffer the same fate. At the same time we can see ever more clearly, in the words of Pope John Paul II, the need for a great effort "to clarify the substantive moral difference between discontinuing medical procedures that may be burdensome, dangerous or disproportionate to the expected outcome...and taking away the ordinary means of preserving life, such as feeding, hydration and normal medical care."

I urge all people of good will to discuss end-of-life-care issues with family members in a manner that truly acknowledges God's dominion over human life and that deeply respects human life in all its stages, from conception until natural death.

###

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Statement Of Cardinal Justin Rigali Archbishop Of Philadelphia Regarding The Death Of Pope John Paul Ii

April 2, 2005

STATEMENT OF CARDINAL JUSTIN RIGALI
ARCHBISHOP OF PHILADELPHIA
REGARDING THE DEATH OF POPE JOHN PAUL II

It was with deep sadness that I received the news of Pope John Paul II's passing. It was also with gratitude to God for the gift of the Holy Father. He will surely be remembered as the greatest spiritual leader of our time. His entire life was an example of how to live out our faith, how to give witness to the love of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Holy Father gave himself completely in service to Jesus and to the universal Church. In his final years, he suffered from many physical ailments but he never allowed those pains and problems to weigh down his spirit; his suffering was his final gift. He was an example to us all of the value of human life at every stage of existence.

As a staunch defender of the most vulnerable, he saw the conflict in America between a culture that celebrates life and a culture that seeks to declare entire groups of human beings, especially the unborn, to be outside the boundaries of legal protection. He appealed for an end to the death penalty, which he called cruel and unnecessary. He called on followers of Christ to be unconditionally pro-life and hoped "America would resist the culture of death and choose to stand steadfastly on the side of life." He said to America: "If you want peace, work for justice. If you want justice, defend life. If you want life, embrace the truth - the truth revealed by God." The Holy Father told us "only a higher moral vision can motivate the choice for life." He said "the values underlying that vision will greatly depend on whether the nation continues to honor and revere the family as the vital foundation of society."

On the day he was elected Pope, I heard him tell the world "the Cardinals have called a new Bishop of Rome... summoned from a faraway country." This Pope may have come from a faraway place, but he grew close to the hearts of millions over the years in every part of the world. He expressed love and gratitude to the priests, deacons, religious, seminarians and laity. With deep affection, he greeted other fellow Christians and members of other religions. He called for a respect for all people, of every race, color and creed. He saw a need to "put an end to every form of racism." The Holy Father's strength of character and purpose gave him the moral authority to lead the world in efforts to find peace. This leadership led to the downfall of communism and a flowering of freedom throughout Europe.

The Pope spoke on the genuine meaning of freedom when he visited Philadelphia in 1979. He also spoke on the dignity of the Priesthood and the need to support and encourage priestly vocations. I accompanied the Holy Father on that trip, the very first time I visited Philadelphia. Among other events, the Pope celebrated Mass for more than one million people on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. What a wonderful welcome he received in this city of Brotherly Love! I also witnessed a never-to-be-forgotten moment in January of 1999 when Pope John Paul II made a Pastoral Visit to Saint Louis, the only such visit to a single diocese in the United States that the Holy Father made during his pontificate. To this day, people in both cities speak of how their own faith was confirmed and strengthened by his inspiring presence.

Pope John Paul II has been called home by God; a good and faithful servant who has earned his eternal reward through a life of love and service to Jesus Christ. May God's people find comfort and inspiration in the witness of the Pope's life and may Jesus bless and watch over his Church on earth as we mourn the loss of our Holy Father.


###






Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Archdiocese Of Philadelphia Day Of Mourning For Our Holy Father, Pope John Paul Ii

April 5, 2005

ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA DAY OF MOURNING
FOR OUR HOLY FATHER, POPE JOHN PAUL II

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia announces that Friday, April 8, 2005 will be observed as a Day of Mourning throughout the five county area of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. All parish elementary, special education and secondary schools of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia will be closed in honor of the funeral of the Holy Father. The Archdiocesan Office Center at 222 North 17th Street in Philadelphia will also be closed.

The funeral of Pope John Paul II will take place in Rome at 4:00 a.m. Eastern time. The Archdiocese of Philadelphia will celebrate a Mass in memory of the life and death of the Holy Father at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul at midday. All priests of the Archdiocese are encouraged to concelebrate the Mass. Catholics as well as those of other faiths are invited to attend the Mass.


Friday, April 8, 2005
12:05 p.m. (Eastern time)
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia



Editor's Note: An audio/video mult-box feed will be provided for electronic media outside of the Cathedral. Television crews will not be permitted inside. There is parking available for live trucks in the Cathedral parking lot -- live trucks please enter on 17th Street between Vine and Race Streets.

Print photographers will be allowed inside of the Cathedral with limited movement. Staff from the Office for Communications will be available to assist.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Archdiocese Of Philadelphia Day Of Mourning For Our Holy Father, Pope John Paul Ii - Update

April 7, 2005

ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA DAY OF MOURNING
FOR OUR HOLY FATHER, POPE JOHN PAUL II - UPDATE

The bells of the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Philadelphia will begin to toll at 11:50 a.m. as several hundred Archdiocesan priests process into the Cathedral for a Mass for the Repose of the Soul of Pope John Paul II. Most Reverend Robert P. Maginnis, Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia, will be the celebrant and homilist.

The first reading will be done in Polish and students from Archdiocesan high schools will read the Prayers of the Faithful (intercessions) in various languages. Six students from Saint Thomas Aquinas School in South Philadelphia, representing the diversity of the Archdiocese, will present the gifts at the Offertory to the celebrant. Seminarians from Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary will assist with the ceremonies. Catholics as well as those of other faiths are invited to attend the Mass.

Friday, April 8, 2005
12:05 p.m. (Eastern time)
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia

Prelude music will be provided by the Bishop Shanahan High School Choral Department at 11:20 a.m. Music during the Mass will be provided by the Cathedral Choir.

All parish elementary, special education and secondary schools of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia will be closed in honor of the funeral of the Holy Father. The Archdiocesan Office Center at 222 North 17th Street will also be closed.

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia,
will concelebrate the funeral of the Holy Father in Rome.
The Cardinal will be available to the media at the North American College at 4:00 p.m. Rome time.


Editor's Note: An audio/video mult-box feed will be provided for electronic media outside of the Cathedral. Television crews will not be permitted inside. There is parking available for live trucks in the Cathedral parking lot - live trucks please enter on 17th Street between Vine and Race Streets.

Print photographers will be allowed inside of the Cathedral with limited movement. Staff from the Office for Communications will be available to assist.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Catholic Charities Appeal Begins

April 11, 2005

CATHOLIC CHARITIES APPEAL BEGINS

The 2005 Catholic Charities Appeal will kick off with four celebrations of the many good works that the annual appeal funds throughout the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. The kick off events are designed to inspire Catholics to help raise more contributions to the Appeal.

Each of the four auxiliary bishops of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia will lead a regional kickoff celebration one week in April, leading up to Appeal Sunday on May 1, 2005.

Six year old Maura McGrath and her family will attend each event. Maura, who has Down's Syndrome, attends St. Katherine's Day School, one of the Archdiocesan schools of special education funded by the Appeal. Her parents will speak about what St. Katharine's means to Maura. Media are welcome to cover the events.

Regional Kickoff Celebrations for the 2005 Catholic Charities Appeal


Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge
Monday, April 4, 2005
7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Saint Katherine Day School
930 Bowman Avenue
Wynnewood, PA

For Montgomery County and Philadelphia-North parishes

Most Reverend Robert P. Maginnis
Monday, April 11, 2005
7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Saint Agnes Parish Hall
233 West Gay Street
West Chester, PA

For Chester County parishes

Most Reverend Joseph P. McFadden
Monday, April 18, 2005
7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Our Lady of Good Counsel
611 Knowles Avenue
Southampton, PA

For Bucks County parishes

Most Reverend Joseph R. Cistone
Monday, April 25, 2005
7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Don Guanella School
1797 South Sproul Road
Springfield, PA

For Delaware and Philadelphia-South parishes


The Catholic Charities Appeal provides human and social services to more than 250,000 men, women and children each year, regardless of their religion. All funds raised stay in the five-county area of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. In 2005, the Catholic Charities Appeal will
* provide food for more than 2 million meals to the hungry through the Community Food Program of Nutritional Development Services
* provide a faith-filled, specialized learning environment to 338 students in the five Archdiocesan schools of special education
* give shelter and other services to homeless single women and women with children at Mercy Hospice, in Center City Philadelphia.

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director, Office for Communications
215-587-3747

Business Leadership Organized For Catholic Schools (blocs) To Hold Annual Fund-raising Gala

April 11, 2005

BUSINESS LEADERSHIP ORGANIZED FOR CATHOLIC SCHOOLS (BLOCS) TO HOLD ANNUAL FUND-RAISING GALA

Building a Brighter Future... One Child at a Time


Business leaders from around the greater Philadelphia region will attend a fund-raising gala to support Catholic education. Business Leadership Organized for Catholic Schools (BLOCS) is committed to the ideal that all parents who wish to provide their children with a value-based, Catholic education should be able to do so. The organization relies upon the support of Catholic and Non-Catholic business leaders, foundations and individuals to financially assist families in need regardless of race, religion, color, creed, national or ethnic origin.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005
Dinner 7:00 p.m.
Marriott Hotel - Downtown Philadelphia
1201 Market Street
Philadelphia



Entertainment will be provided by the Elementary and Secondary All-Catholic Jazz Bands, the Bishop McDevitt High School Step Dancers (Montgomery County) and St. Aloysius School, Pottstown Voices of Hope. A theater presentation will be made by Cardinal O'Hara High School (Delaware County) doing excerpts from their latest production, GODSPELL.

The invocation will be delivered by Most Reverend Joseph P. McFadden, Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia. Ron Jaworski, former Philadelphia Eagle, will honor outgoing Chairman J. William Mills, III, (President of PNC Bank). Mr. Mills will be celebrated for his efforts on behalf of BLOCS over the past three years. Mr. Mills' successor, Gerry Lenfest, will be welcomed as the new Chairman of BLOCS. BLOCS will also pay tribute to another former Chairman, G. Fred DiBona, Jr. (President and CEO of Independence Blue Cross) who passed away in January after a battle with cancer.

BLOCS has raised approximately $11 million for the Catholic Schools since 1998
(as of 2004). In the past seven years, BLOCS has helped make Catholic schools available to more than 11,000 children.


###

Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

Don Guanella School Puts On 77th Annual Roller Skating Show

April 13, 2005

DON GUANELLA SCHOOL PUTS ON 77TH ANNUAL
ROLLER SKATING SHOW

The young men of Don Guanella School will put on their 77th annual roller skating show. This year over 50 special athletes from the school will participate in a tribute entitled Don Guanella Goes to the Movies. Don Guanella is an Archdiocese of Philadelphia school in Springfield, Delaware County, for boys with a wide variety of disabilities ranging in age from five to 21.


Wednesday, April 13, 2005
7:00 p.m.
Don Guanella School
Route 320
Springfield, Delaware County



The boys, in full costume, will pay tribute to several movies including Top Gun and The Wizard of Oz. Assistance for participants will be provided by volunteers from Marple Newtown High School Honor Society.

###





Editor's note: For more information, please contact Robert Neely, Activities Director at Don Guanella School at 610-543-1418, Ext. 309.

Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

Archdiocese Hosts Annual Mass For Persons With Disabilities<br> Approximately 1,000 People Are Expected To Atttend

April 14, 2005

ARCHDIOCESE HOSTS ANNUAL MASS FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES

Approximately 1,000 people are expected to atttend

The Most Reverend Robert P. Maginnis, Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia, will celebrate the annual Mass for Persons with Disabilities. The theme for this year's Mass is Creating and Fostering Communion. The Mass is sponsored by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia's Department of Pastoral Care for Persons with Disabilities, which together with parishes and affiliated Church organizations, is committed to raising awareness and creating access to the life of the Church for people with all abilities.

Sunday, April 17, 2005
2:00 p.m. Musical Prelude
2:30 p.m. Mass
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia, PA


The prelude music just prior to the entrance procession will be performed by soloist Richard Passanante with American Sign Language interpretation by Sean Murphy. The entrance procession participants will be from Catholic schools or programs serving individuals with disabilities. Choirs from St. Joseph and Presentation BVM Parishes, Cheltenham, will provide the liturgical music. Volunteers from area Catholic youth groups and high schools will assist with accommodating individuals with different abilities at the Mass.

Everyone is welcome to attend and participation is encouraged among individuals with disabilities, their families, friends, neighbors and caregivers.

A reception will be held immediately following Mass in the Archdiocesan Office Center at 222 North 17th Street. During the reception, the Nevilaires Choir, an adult choir affiliated with Overbrook School for the Blind, will perform.

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director, Office for Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali Asks For Prayers During Conclave

April 18, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI ASKS FOR PRAYERS DURING CONCLAVE

A letter from Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, regarding the Conclave to elect a new Pope, was read at all Masses this past weekend in the 275 parishes of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. You may quote from the letter or reprint it in its entirety. Cardinal Rigali is one of 115 Cardinals participating in the Conclave. He has been in Rome since Monday, April 4, 2005, following the death of Pope John Paul II.


Letter of Cardinal Justin Rigali to the Priests and Faithful
of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia
April 17, 2005


Dear Priests, dear People of God,

I write to you from Rome as the Church comes to the end of the nine days of prayer for the soul of our beloved Holy Father Pope John Paul II. I am deeply grateful to you for all the prayers that you have offered for him.

On Monday, April 18 the Cardinals will enter the Conclave to elect a new Pope. What is so gratifying is the fact that we experience the support and prayerful solidarity of the entire Church.

I encourage you to pray fervently during these days, to offer or assist at Mass when possible, and to gather frequently in Eucharistic adoration. I ask you to invoke for the Cardinals the light and strength of the Holy Spirit. Please continue to ask our Blessed Mother, Seat of Wisdom and Temple of the Holy Spirit, to assist us. I assure you all of my own prayers and love in Christ Jesus.

Cardinal Justin Rigali
Archbishop of Philadelphia


Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

New Parish In West Philadelphia To Be Named Our Lady Of The Blessed Sacrament

April 19, 2005

NEW PARISH IN WEST PHILADELPHIA TO BE NAMED
OUR LADY OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will celebrate the opening Mass for a new parish in West Philadelphia which will be named Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament. The Mass will take place on Sunday, July 3, 2005 at 11:00 a.m. The new parish will be formed, as previously reported, by the consolidation of Our Lady of the Rosary Parish and Our Lady of Victory Parish, and will be located at 63rd and Callowhill Streets, using the buildings of the present Our Lady of the Rosary site. The founding date of the new parish will be July 1, 2005.

Reverend Thomas P. Kletzel, Pastor of Our Lady of the Rosary Parish and Our Lady of Victory Parish, announced the new name to parishioners at Holy Week Services and the official decrees were published in parish bulletins on April 17, 2005. The name was chosen by Cardinal Rigali following a survey of parishioners who indicated they wished to be under the patronage of the Blessed Mother and also wanted to honor the Year of the Eucharist, currently underway in the Archdiocese.

Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament Parish School
The new parish school will also be located in the present buildings of Our Lady of the Rosary. The school held an Open House on Sunday, April 10, 2005 and began registration on Wednesday, April 13, 2005. The new school will open in September 2005.

Background
A Steering Committee, made up of the pastor, the principal and lay representatives of each parish, made the recommendation for consolidation after much prayer, discussion and deliberation. Our Lady of the Rosary Parish and Our Lady of Victory Parish have faced declining numbers of registered parishioners in recent years. The number of parishioners of Our Lady of the Rosary Parish has decreased from 1,045 in 1990 to 400 in 2004. During that same time period, the number of parishioners of Our Lady of Victory has decreased from 1,347 to 537.

The schools' enrollments have also been steadily decreasing and the costs to educate each student increasing. In the 2004-2005 school year, Our Lady of the Rosary Parish School enrollment is 162 students and Our Lady of Victory Parish School is 190.

###


Editor's Note: For addition background information, please visit Pastoral Planning ~ Cluster 21.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Celebrate Mass For Pope Benedict Xvi

April 21, 2005

Cardinal Rigali to Celebrate Mass for Pope Benedict XVI

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will be the main celebrant for a Mass of Thanksgiving for Pope Benedict XVI.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005
12:05 p.m.
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia, PA



All the faithful are invited to attend. All priests of the Archdiocese are welcome to concelebrate.


###

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director, Office for Communications
215-587-3747

Saint Josaphat Parish Elementary School To Close In June 2005

April 25, 2005

SAINT JOSAPHAT PARISH ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
TO CLOSE IN JUNE 2005

Reverend Monsignor John Wendrychowicz, Pastor of Saint Josaphat Parish, announced at Masses this past weekend that Saint Josaphat Parish Elementary School, in the Manayunk section of Philadelphia (Cotton and Silverwood Streets), will close in June 2005. Monsignor Wendrychowicz informed teachers, parishioners and school families that he had gained the support of the Parish Pastoral and Finance Councils to request permission to close the school. Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, accepted the recommendation and granted permission for the school to close at the end of the current school year. Students presently enrolled in Saint Josaphat School will have the option to attend any other parish elementary school for the 2005-2006 school year.

A message to parish and school families said that a process into which Saint Josaphat Parish entered, along with the other parishes in Manayunk, rendered the Saint Josaphat Parish community unable to come to a decision that was acceptable to parish members and school families. In January 2005, Saint Josaphat selected to remain as an individual parish elementary school along with Saint John the Baptist Parish. Holy Family, Saint Lucy and Saint Mary of the Assumption Parish, all in Manayunk, decided to join together to establish a new Regional Catholic School. That school, Holy Child Catholic School, will open in September 2005.

As those associated with Saint Josaphat School moved forward in planning for the 2005-2006 school year, they realized that enrollment was quite low, at 130 students. Conscious of keeping tuition at an affordable rate for families, an increased tuition rate for next school year was set. The tuition would need to be supported by additional fundraising of approximately $300,000 as well as the need for parish funds to be used to subsidize the school. The first of these supports, fundraising $300,000, is an impossible task for a small school community to accomplish. The latter, depleting parish funds, is unfair to the overall good of the parish.

Cardinal Rigali said, "I am grateful to Monsignor Wendrychowicz and Monsignor Beach, for their leadership in making this recommendation to close Saint Josaphat School. I recognize it was guided by a desire for careful stewardship of parish resources and for the pastoral care of parents, children and staff of the school. It is my hope that parents will continue to choose a quality, Catholic education for their children and I pray that the parishioners of St. Josaphat and all the faithful of Manayunk will continue to support Catholic education and be guided by the Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior during this transition."


Background
A School Study Committee and a Steering Committee, made up of representatives of all five Manayunk parishes, worked for two years on the difficult task of examining declining enrolment and changing demographics in the Manayunk community. The Steering Committee believed a restructuring was necessary because current enrolment at all five schools combined is only 890 students; compared to 1285 just three years ago.

In January 2005, Cardinal Rigali accepted a school plan, submitted by the Regional Vicar, Monsignor Beach, on behalf of the parishes in Manayunk. At that time, it was announced Holy Family, Saint Lucy and Saint Mary of the Assumption Parish Elementary Schools would join together to establish a new Regional Catholic School to be known as Holy Child Catholic School. Saint Josaphat Parish and Saint John the Baptist Parish chose to remain as individual parish elementary schools. (Note: Saint John the Baptist Parish is not part of the Saint Josaphat April 2005 decision.)

Editor's Note: For more information, please visit www.archdiocese-phl.org. under Pastoral Planning/Cluster 17.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali Issues Pastoral Letter On Inauguration Of Pope Benedict Xvi

April 25, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI ISSUES PASTORAL LETTER
ON INAUGURATION OF POPE BENEDICT XVI

Cardinal Justin Rigali asked that the following letter be read at all of the 275 parishes of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia this past weekend. Media are welcome to reprint the letter in its entirety or quote from it.

Dear brother Priests, dear People of God,

On this Sunday, April 24, 2005, Pope Benedict XVI solemnly begins his ministry as Bishop of Rome, Successor of Peter and Vicar of Christ for the Universal Church.

Together with every parish and Catholic community throughout the world we will be praying with him and for him. His name will be mentioned in every Mass celebrated throughout the world.

It is important for us to realize that our union in faith and love with our new Holy Father is part of God's plan for His Church. It is important for us to join Pope Benedict XVI in repeating to Jesus Saint Peter's profession of faith: " You are the Christ, the Son of the living God." At the same time we reflect on Jesus' words to Peter: "You are Peter and upon this rock I will build my Church."

As we rejoice in the election of our new Pope and pray for him, we are called to express our confidence and trust in Jesus Christ the supreme and eternal Pastor of the Church, who is with us until the end of time.

We entrust the ministry of Pope Benedict XVI to Mary, Queen of Apostles and Mother of the Church.

In the love of Christ Jesus,

+Justin Cardinal Rigali

Cardinal Justin Rigali
Archbishop of Philadelphia


Note: Cardinal Rigali will celebrate a Mass of Thanksgiving for Pope Benedict XVI at 12:05 p.m. on Wednesday, April 27, 2005 at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul. All are welcome.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Archdiocese Of Philadelphia Plans Moving Forward For Senior Housing At Former St. John Neumann High School

April 25, 2005

ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA PLANS MOVING FORWARD
FOR SENIOR HOUSING AT FORMER ST. JOHN NEUMANN HIGH SCHOOL

APPLICATION SUBMITTED TO PENNSYLVANIA HOUSING FINANCE AGENCY
FOR TAX CREDIT ALLOCATION TO RENOVATE THE FORMER HIGH SCHOOL SITE


The Archdiocese of Philadelphia Secretariat for Catholic Human Services has submitted an application to the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA) for a 12 million dollar tax credit allocation to renovate the former St. John Neumann High School. Additional funding for renovations will come from the City of Philadelphia. St. John Neumann Place (SJNP) would be an affordable, independent living residence for seniors 62 years and older. This proposal would involve conversion and substantial rehabilitation of the former high school at 26th and Moore Streets. The renovations include demolition of the school gym and auditorium and the priory. The remaining classroom area would be converted into the senior residence.

St. John Neumann Place
The residence will provide 75 one bedroom apartments with an average range of 650 to 700 square feet. Each apartment will be air conditioned. The building will include community rooms, a worship space and space for the provision of supportive services, which will be provided by Catholic Health Care Services. Parking and green areas within the site grounds will be available. The LIFE program of St. Agnes Continuing Care Center will partner with Catholic Health Care services in offering additional services to eligible and in need residents with assistance in daily living activities.

Seniors whose incomes range from 40% to 60% of area median income, currently approximately $19,280 to $29,280 gross annually, would be eligible for the units. The operations of the facility would not be subsidized, but would be funded by rental income. Catholic Health Care Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia will oversee the operations of St. John Neumann Place.

A full development team created the plan submitted to PHFA, including Blackney Hayes Architects; Domus, Inc., General Contractor; Vollmer/Barton & Martin, Civil Engineering; Anderson Consulting, Environmental Testing; The Ludwig Corporation, Market Analysts and Appraiser; Altman Group, Property Management; and Diamond & Associates, Development Consultant. The tax credit allocations will be announced at PHFA's September 2005 Board Meeting. If SJNP receives the necessary funding from these sources, closing and construction commencement is projected for early 2006 with completion and occupancy in early 2007.

Background
The Archdiocese of Philadelphia has made a concerted effort to engage the community during this process. The South Philadelphia community was surveyed during the summer of 2004. A total of 473 surveys were received-202 from the area around the site and 271 from other South Philadelphia neighborhoods. Eighty-six percent of respondents support using the site to provide housing for older adults, operated by the Archdiocese, and available to the general public. In the immediate area surrounding the site, support was higher at 89%. Seven percent opposed the proposed reuse, and 8% did not indicate outright support or opposition. When asked about their own household's needs, 69% of respondents indicated that their household would benefit from the proposed development of housing for older adults.

Seven small neighborhood meetings were held during October and November 2004 to seek community input into the process. On February 22, 2005 a large community meeting was held in the auditorium of the former high school; one hundred neighbors heard about the plans for the site from members of the development team.

Editor's Note: Saint John Neumann High School was founded in September 1934 as Southeast Catholic High School. The school's name was changed to Bishop Neumann in 1955 and Saint John Neumann in 1978.

In September 2003, Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua accepted a recommendation to consolidate St. John Neumann High School and St. Marie Goretti High School at the end of the 2003-004 school year. The recommendation was forwarded by the Secretary for Catholic Education based upon the work of a Steering Committee and its recommendation for consolidation.

The consolidated Saints John Neumann and Maria Goretti Catholic High School opened at the site of the former St. Maria Goretti High School for Girls in September 2005.


Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Archdiocesan Schools Raise Money For Catholic Charities Appeal With "nickels For Neighbors"

April 27, 2005

ARCHDIOCESAN SCHOOLS RAISE MONEY FOR CATHOLIC CHARITIES APPEAL
WITH "NICKELS FOR NEIGHBORS"



Buckets of nickels will fill the gymnasium of Archbishop Carroll High School this week as students conclude a week of raising "Nickels for Neighbors." Student representatives from each of the 21 Archdiocesan high schools, 202 parish elementary schools and five Archdiocesan schools of special education schools will present the funds collected by their schools for the 2005 Catholic Charities Appeal. "Nickels for Neighbors" teaches the young people about those in our community who are less fortunate and focuses attention on Appeal Sunday - May 1, 2005.

Each school was given buckets and asked to collect nickels during the past week. Schools could choose any fund raising method, for example, dress down days or classroom competitions, to collect nickels. The Catholic Charities Appeal is partnering with Bank of America, which is sponsoring the cost of the buckets and assisting with the sorting and counting. Most Reverend Joseph McFadden, Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia, who oversees Catholic education in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, will offer remarks and be available for interviews.


Friday, April 29, 2005
Students' Arrival 10:00 a.m.
Remarks 10:20 a.m.
Archbishop John Carroll High School - Gymnasium
211 Matson Ford Road
Radnor, Delaware County

The Catholic Charities Appeal provides human and social services to more than 250,000 men, women and children each year, regardless of their religion. All funds raised stay in the five county area of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. In 2005, the Catholic Charities Appeal will
provide food for more than 2 million meals to the hungry through the Community Food Program of Nutritional Development Services
provide a faith-filled, specialized learning environment to 338 students in the five Archdiocesan schools of special education
provide shelter and other services to homeless single women and women with children at Mercy Hospice, in Center City Philadelphia.

www.catholiccharitiesappeal.org
















Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Statement Of Reverend Joseph A. Tracy Secretary For Catholic Human Services Regarding National Cover The Uninsured Week May 1-8, 2005

May 2, 2005

STATEMENT OF REVEREND JOSEPH A. TRACY
SECRETARY FOR CATHOLIC HUMAN SERVICES
REGARDING NATIONAL COVER THE UNINSURED WEEK
MAY 1-8, 2005

The history of health care in the Philadelphia area reflects the essential role of faith-based institutions founded on the charitable motive to assist people in times of illness and serious need. Over the last two centuries, Catholic hospitals, nursing homes, shelters and emergency relief centers have worked together to provide compassionate and professional care for all, regardless of ability to pay. Through the various facilities and programs of Catholic Human Services the Archdiocese of Philadelphia continues the mission of Jesus by healing the sick and caring for the weak.

The costs of health care delivery have increased dramatically over the past few decades, and all institutions, including Catholic ones, have found it difficult to absorb the expense of providing care for ever larger numbers of uninsured and underinsured clients. The spiraling costs of quality health care often place health services beyond the reach of those without insurance.

Today some 45 million Americans (including eight million children) find themselves in the vulnerable position of being without health insurance. Here in Southeastern Pennsylvania, there are over 260,000 uninsured, with nearly one in five being a child, and the statistics are only getting worse. A problem of this magnitude obliges me as Secretary for Catholic Human Services to join my voice to those of other peoples of good will who are deeply concerned about this grave social problem.

Justice demands that something be done to assure all people can access adequate and affordable health care. The social teaching of the Catholic Church affirms this as a basic human right since public health is an essential social good. The Church teaches that every person possesses a fundamental human dignity, and that each has a right to basic and continuing health care. Such a right ought not to depend solely on having parents or spouse or even oneself in a job with an employer who provides "good" benefits.

The first week of May, 2005 has been designated as Cover the Uninsured Week. Together with leaders throughout the country, we once again advocate for health care coverage for all. Catholic institutions will continue to fulfill our special duty to care for some of the poor and most vulnerable, but it cannot care for all. I call upon political and business leaders to work diligently toward health care policies and systems that will serve the common good, with particular attention to the poor and weak. A respect for the dignity of all God's children means that there needs to be a "place at the table" for everyone.

Undeniably, health insurance for all is a challenging and complex issue, with many and varied proposals for addressing it. At its core, however, the deplorable number of uninsured is a crisis that is fundamentally a question of values. As Catholics solidly "pro-life" in all that adjective entails, we must be concerned for all the uninsured of our region. Our indignation at the status quo sends the message to the uninsured that "we care what happens to you, and will work for the day when you too will be covered."

###

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Over 2,000 Expected To Participate In The 9th Annual Mother's Day May Procession

May 4, 2005

OVER 2,000 EXPECTED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE 9th ANNUAL MOTHER'S DAY MAY PROCESSION

Celebrate Motherhood


On Mother's Day, approximately 2,000 participants are expected to join the ninth annual May Procession and Prayer Service at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Philadelphia. May is the month designated to honor the Blessed Virgin Mary. Participants will recite the rosary in a procession outside of the Cathedral. During the prayer service the May Queen will crown a statue of Mary inside of the Cathedral.

Sunday, May 8, 2005
2:00 p.m. Procession Begins
2:30 p.m. Prayer Service Begins
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia


The May Procession homilist is Monsignor John A. Close, Rector of the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul. The St. Philip Neri Parish Children's Choir will provide music. The 2005 May Queen is Maryellen Nerz-Stormes, Ph.D. Dr. Nerz-Stormes and her court were chosen through an essay campaign entitled Why My Mom Should Be May Queen.


Editor's note: For more information please visit www.mayprocession.org


###

Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

Two Parish Elementary Schools To Close In June 2005 Saint Bartholomew Parish Elementary School, Northeast Philadelphia Holy Trinity Catholic School, Bridgeport, Montgomery County

May 16, 2005

TWO PARISH ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS TO CLOSE IN JUNE 2005
Saint Bartholomew Parish Elementary School, Northeast Philadelphia
Holy Trinity Catholic School, Bridgeport, Montgomery County

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia announces the closure of two parish elementary schools at the conclusion of the 2004-05 school year. Saint Bartholomew Catholic School in the lower Northeast section of Philadelphia and Holy Trinity Catholic School in Bridgeport, Montgomery County will close in June 2005. Students from Saint Augustine, Sacred Heart and Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parishes attend Holy Trinity Catholic School. The students presently in these schools will have the opportunity to attend one of the neighboring parish elementary schools for the 2005-06 school year.

The need to close these schools at this time is due to significantly low registration numbers for the 2005-2006 school year. As of May 3, 2005, only 145 students had re-enrolled in Saint Bartholomew Parish School for next year. Holy Trinity Catholic School had only 102 students enrolled for September 2005 ~ with only six students enrolled for kindergarten and four students enrolled for fifth grade.

As enrollment declines, the cost to educate each student increases. The cost per pupil at these two existing schools would exceed $5,000 per child if the schools were to continue next year given the student population and increased costs. Tuition cannot cover these costs which forces the parishes to subsidize the schools to a level which jeopardizes the future of the parishes. The quality of the school programs would also be compromised since this cost per pupil would not include many of the programs that make up an excellent, quality Catholic education.

The Pastors of these parishes announced the closure at Masses this past weekend (May 14-15, 2005). The Regional Vicars, on behalf of the Pastors, submitted the recommendations that the schools close this year to Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia. The recommendations received overwhelming support from the Parish Pastoral Councils and Parish Finance Councils. They realized that keeping the schools open with such low enrollments and high costs was not a viable option. Cardinal Rigali said, "I accept with sadness the recommendation to close these two Catholic schools. I am appreciative of the desire of Pastors, Regional Vicars and the faithful to use the resources of the parishes wisely and to provide the best pastoral care for parents, children and staff of the schools. It is my hope that parents will choose Catholic education in nearby schools for their children. May the gift of the Holy Spirit to the Church, which we celebrate on this Pentecost, inspire all the faithful to support Catholic education in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia."

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Ordain Five Men To The Priesthood

May 17, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI TO ORDAIN FIVE MEN TO THE PRIESTHOOD

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will ordain five men to the priesthood on

Saturday, May 21, 2005
Procession 9:45 a.m.
Mass 10:00 a.m.
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia


Ordination will take place during the Mass, following the homily. At the end of May, each of the newly ordained priests will be assigned to a parish in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia where they will serve as parochial vicars. A parochial vicar is a priest appointed by the Cardinal to assist the pastor of a parish.

Those being ordained are: Rev. Mr. Armand D. Garcia, Rev. Mr. Richard K. McFadden Jr., Rev. Mr. Augustus C. Puleo, Rev. Mr. Bernard J. Taglianetti and Rev. Mr. Robert C. Yetman. All have completed studies at Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary in Wynnewood.

The average age of the class of 2005 is 34. Three of the five being ordained are from the Norristown area, one from Cherry Hill, NJ and one a native of the Philippines. Rev. Mr. Taglianetti worked as a computer programmer and Rev. Mr. Puleo was a university-level Spanish professor. Rev. Mr. Garcia earned a college degree in Manila, Philippines, before moving to Havertown. Rev. Mr. McFadden and Rev. Mr. Yetman are products of Catholic education, graduating from Kennedy-Kenrick High School in Norristown and Paul VI High School in Haddonfield, NJ, respectively.


###

Editor's Note: Black and white photos of the ordination candidates are available by e-mailing mgambino@adphila.org or calling the Office for Communications at 215-587-3747. Video cameras will not be permitted in the Cathedral during the Mass. Reporters and still cameras, with very limited movement, will be allowed. There will be a mult-box feed (audio and video) provided outside the Cathedral. Television/radio crews will need a BNC connector and recording deck.

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Catholic Social Services ~ Caring For Seniors

May 18, 2005

CATHOLIC SOCIAL SERVICES ~ CARING FOR SENIORS

May is Older Americans Month but at all times you can find Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia working for seniors. Some examples can be found in the Norris Square and Hunting Park section of Philadelphia ~ bringing seniors and young mothers together for knitting and life lessons.

The Casa Godmother Program (Las Madrinas de Casa), is an intergenerational program which brings older adults who are participants at the Norris Square Senior Community Center with young mothers at Casa del Carmen, a Family Services Center. Both Norris Square and Casa del Carmen are programs of Catholic Social Services (CSS) in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Every Friday, the Norris Square seniors use their talents in knitting, embroidery and sewing to create baby blankets and baby clothes to be given to these mothers of newborn babies. In addition, the older women, the "Madrinas," teach their handicraft skills to the young mothers. Together the different generations create baby clothes and blankets which will be used by the mothers for their newborn sons and daughters. The seniors also hand down the wisdom they gained raising their own children. It is a sharing of gifts of both handicrafts and life experiences.

Casa del Carmen Family Service Center and the Norris Square Senior Community Center are located in predominantly Latino sections of North Philadelphia. Both facilities are supported by the annual Catholic Charities Appeal.

Catholic Social Services in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia operates five Senior Service Centers in Philadelphia. There are also programs for seniors at the CSS Family Services Centers, located in all of the counties of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia (Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties).

For a complete listing of CSS Senior Service Centers and Family Service Centers, visit the Catholic Social Services web site.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali Announces Philadelphia Priests Honored By Pope John Paul Ii

May 19, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI ANNOUNCES PHILADELPHIA
PRIESTS HONORED BY POPE JOHN PAUL II

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, announces that Pope John Paul II, shortly before his death, conferred Papal Honors on 14 priests of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. All of the priests will receive the title of "Monsignor" and are being honored as outstanding examples of their priestly vocation and for service to the Church.

Two priests were honored with title of Chaplains of His Holiness. Four priests previously named Chaplains of His Holiness were elevated to Prelates of Honor. Eight other priests were named Prelates of Honor.

Prelates of Honor
Reverend Richard J. Wright -In Residence, St. Colman, Ardmore, Montgomery County
Reverend Henry B. Degnan - Pastor Emeritus, St. Joseph's Parish, Aston, Delaware County
Reverend Joseph P. McGeown - Pastor, St. Clare Parish, Linfield, Montgomery County
Reverend James J. Foley -Pastor, Saints Peter and Paul Parish, West Chester
Reverend Hugh J. Shields - Pastor, Visitation B.V.M Parish, Philadelphia
Reverend Robert J. Powell - Pastor, St. Cyril of Jerusalem Parish, Jamison, Bucks County
Reverend David H. Benz - Pastor, St. Philomena Parish, Lansdowne, Delaware County
Reverend Charles L. Sangermano - Pastor, Holy Saviour Parish, Norristown, Montgomery County

Chaplains of His Holiness named Prelates of Honor
Reverend Monsignor Daniel J. Sullivan - Regional Vicar for Philadelphia South/ Pastor, Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish
Reverend Monsignor James D. Beisel - Regional Vicar for Bucks County
Reverend Monsignor Timothy C. Senior - Secretary for Clergy
Reverend Monsignor John J. McIntyre - Secretary to the Cardinal

Chaplains of His Holiness
Reverend Joseph G. Prior - Rector, St. Charles Borromeo Seminary, Overbrook
Reverend Joseph A. Tracy - Secretary for Catholic Human Services, Philadelphia

Cardinal Rigali will celebrate a Mass on Sunday, June 12, 2005 at 3:30 p.m. at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul during which the Papal Honors will be acknowledged.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Lead Prayers Against Violence Among City Youth

June 1, 2005

Cardinal Rigali to Lead Prayers Against Violence Among City Youth

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will lead a prayer service and procession for peace in Northwest Philadelphia. The 13th annual service commemorates the witness of Catholics martyred in Uganda.

Remembrance of the Uganda Martyrs
Friday, June 3, 2005
7:00 p.m.
Saint Francis of Assisi Church
Greene and Logan Streets
Philadelphia

Candlelight procession through community to follow


The prayer service, organized by the black Catholic deacons for parishes in the Germantown/Northwest Philadelphia area, is one of approximately 400 Safe Night Philadelphia events held June 3 that will focus on the issue of violence and young people in the city. The School District of Philadelphia sponsors the event that aims to engage numerous youths in anti-violence workshops and activities throughout the city.

June 3 is the feast day of St. Charles Lwanga and 22 companions who were martyred for refusing to renounce their Catholic faith in 1886. The martyrs were canonized saints in 1964. From a country of approximately 200 Catholics at their time of their death, Uganda now has some three million Catholics. The martyrs stand today as witnesses of people who transformed violence into peace through prayer.

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Preside At Groundbreaking For New Catholic School

June 1, 2005

Cardinal Rigali to Preside at Groundbreaking for New Catholic School

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will lead a groundbreaking ceremony for a new regional Catholic elementary school in West Brandywine Township, Chester County.

Groundbreaking Ceremony
Pope John Paul II Regional Catholic Elementary School,
West Brandywine Township
Sunday, June 5, 2005
4:00 p.m.


The Pope John Paul II Regional Catholic Elementary School will have a capacity for approximately 900 students. It will serve the Catholic parishes of St. Cecilia, St. Joseph, Our Lady of the Rosary and St. Stanislaus Kostka in Coatesville, Our Lady of Consolation in Parkesburg and St. Peter in West Brandywine. The school is expected to open in September 2006.

A reception for participants, including hundreds of Catholic faithful and elected officials of the area, will be held at Bishop Shanahan High School, Downingtown, immediately following the ceremony.

###


Note: A newly consolidated Catholic school in Philadelphia's Bridesburg section has also been named for the late pontiff. Pope John Paul II Elementary School will serve the children of All Saints and St. John Cantius Parishes beginning in September 2005.

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Catholic Social Services Coordinator Caps Three Decades Of Service To Seniors

June 20, 2005

Catholic Social Services Coordinator Caps Three Decades of Service to Seniors

After 31 years of leading social ministry for seniors at St. Charles Senior Community Center, Daryl Kezell will retire as the center's coordinator. Beloved by staff and senior participants of the center, St. Charles will throw a retirement party in her honor.

Retirement Party for Daryl Kezell
Friday, June 24, 2005
11:00 a.m.
St. Charles Senior Community Center
1941 Christian Street
Philadelphia, PA 19146


The party for Kezell will take place on the same day other participants of the center celebrate their June birthdays. She will retire effective July 1, 2005.

Located in South Philadelphia, St. Charles is one of five senior community centers operated by Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Catholic Social Services operates additional senior programs and numerous other services at Family Service Centers in all the counties of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia (Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties).

For more information on the many good works offered by Catholic Social Services, visit
www.css-phl.org.

###

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Archdiocese Welcomes Bio 2005 Conventioneers, Urges Adult Stem Cell Research

June 20, 2005

Archdiocese Welcomes BIO 2005 Conventioneers, Urges Adult Stem Cell Research

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia welcomes participants of the Biotechnology Industry Organization's international convention held this week in Philadelphia. The convention brings together experts in biotechnology and biomedical sciences. One topic of discussion is likely to be stem cell research.

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, addressed the issue in a op-ed essay in the June 19 edition of The Philadelphia Inquirer. "The Church encourages the development of research in this area," he wrote, "in a manner that respects the sanctity of human life at every stage."

The Catholic Church supports adult-stem cell research and opposes embryonic stem cell research. The latter extracts stem cells by destroying human embryos. "The Church can never condone destroying the unborn to develop a potential benefit for the sick," the Cardinal said. "The deliberate destruction of human life is contrary to God's loving plan for all His creatures."

Adult stem cell research holds the promise of developing treatments that return people to good health without sacrificing human life.

"The attendees of the biotechnology convention and all those in our region should see the advantage of Philadelphia as a global leader in adult stem cell research," Cardinal Rigali said. "They should recognize the proven success of research on adult stem cells at producing treatments for medical conditions and its non-violation of human life."

For in-depth commentary and more information on stem cell research, contact the Office for Communications at 215-587-3747.

###

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Don Guanella School To Hold Benefit For A New Multi-sensory Room

June 22, 2005

DON GUANELLA SCHOOL TO HOLD BENEFIT
FOR A NEW MULTI-SENSORY ROOM

Don Guanella School will hold a benefit rock concert to raise money for a new multi-sensory room. The benefit will bring together Don Guanella alumnus, Chris "Corky" Burke, star of the television show "Life Goes On," and Charlie Gracie, local rock and roll Hall of Fame musician. For the young men of Don Guanella School the concert is an interactive event.

Friday, June 24, 2005
7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Cardinal Krol Center
Route 320
Springfield, Delaware County


The multi-sensory room, will combine light, sound, and touch to create a relaxing environment for the students of Don Guanella. Don Guanella is an Archdiocese of Philadelphia school in Springfield, Delaware County, for boys with a wide variety of disabilities ranging in age from five to 21.

###


Editor's note: For more information, please contact Robert Neely, Activities Director at Don Guanella School at 610-543-1418, Ext. 309.

Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

Saint Cyprian Parish To Celebrate Fifth Anniversary

June 23, 2005

SAINT CYPRIAN PARISH TO CELEBRATE FIFTH ANNIVERSARY

Saint Cyprian Parish of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia will celebrate its fifth anniversary with a Mass of Thanksgiving. The principal celebrant and homilist will be Most Reverend Martin D. Holley, Auxiliary Bishop, Archdiocese of Washington, D.C. Bishop Holley is one of the African American Catholic Bishops.

Sunday, July 3, 2005
10:00 a.m.
Saint Cyprian
63rd Street & Cedar Avenue
West Philadelphia


Founded on July 1, 2000, Saint Cyprian Parish was formed from a consolidation of Saint Carthage and Transfiguration Parishes. Under the leadership of the Pastor, Reverend Monsignor Federico Britto, the parish is one of the largest communities of African American Catholics in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. Saint Cyprian Parish also serves as the home of many African Catholics who celebrate Mass in their native languages.

Editor's Note: For more information please call (215) 747-3250.

###

Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

Innovative Catholic Social Services Program Helps To Prevent Postpartum Depression

June 27, 2005

Innovative Catholic Social Services Program Helps to Prevent Postpartum Depression

Motherhood brings some of life's greatest joys, but it can also lead to a struggle with depression. Approximately one in 10 new mothers experience some form of postpartum depression, putting themselves and their children at risk for harm.

The Bucks County Family Service Center runs an innovative screening program that may prevent postpartum depression. The center is an agency of Catholic Social Services (CSS) of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

The center's team of three female therapists visits women seeking prenatal check-ups at Mother Bachmann Maternity Center, Bensalem, a free clinic for expectant mothers, as well as Doylestown Hospital and Grandview Hospital in Sellersville. Women who choose to take part in the screening process offer details on their mental health history and other factors. If the onset of symptoms of depression is observed by the case managers or clinic staff during follow-up visits, the therapists use the background to prevent or provide early treatment of a possibly intense and dangerous depression experienced by a client.

This preventative approach is the innovative feature of the program, intended to help new mothers cope with the stresses they face and prevent child abuse. CSS developed the screening tool to address postpartum depression in 2002 at the suggestion of Bucks County Children and Youth Social Services Agency.

Bucks County Family Service Center, offering numerous social services, is supported by the annual Catholic Charities Appeal.

Catholic Social Services in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia operates Family Service Centers in all the counties of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia (Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties).

For a complete listing of CSS Family Service Centers, visit Catholic Social Services on the web at www.css-phl.org.

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Archdiocesan High School Graduates Awarded More Than $190 Million In College Scholarships

July 8, 2005

Archdiocesan High School Graduates Awarded More Than $190 Million in College Scholarships

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia's Office of Catholic Education announces that the Class of 2005 has been awarded more than $190 million in university or college scholarships. This is an increase of more than $9.2 million over last year for graduates of the 21 Archdiocesan Catholic high schools.

The office recently released a report showing graduates of Archdiocesan schools have been awarded $1.7 billion over the past 19 years. The figure represents cumulative scholarship awards for each year in the report.

Students typically receive scholarships to several colleges or universities but only use one scholarship to attend the institution of their choice. The total figure suggests colleges seek and highly value the products of Archdiocesan Catholic education.

Of the 5,435 Archdiocesan graduates of the Class of 2005, more than 42 percent were offered scholarships which averaged $82,000 per person. The total amount of scholarships offered rose 5 percent above last year.

More than 23 percent of the graduates will attend a Catholic college or university in the fall.

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali Creates New Position To Minister To Hispanic Catholics In Archdiocese Of Philadelphia

July 11, 2005

Cardinal Rigali Creates New Position to Minister to Hispanic Catholics in Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Cardinal Justin Rigali recently appointed Msgr. Hugh J. Shields as the Archdiocese of Philadelphia's first Vicar for Hispanic Catholics. In his position, Msgr. Shields will represent the Cardinal to the Spanish-speaking community in the Archdiocese, which has grown more than 50 percent in the past decade.

"The Catholic Hispanic community continues to grow in number and diversity within the Archdiocese of Philadelphia , and the Church is enriched by their presence and many gifts," Cardinal Rigali said. "Msgr. Shields will be my direct representative to this vibrant community and will assist me in ministering to the spiritual needs of Spanish-speaking Catholics in the Archdiocese."

Msgr. Shields, 60, is currently pastor of predominately Hispanic Visitation B.V.M. Parish in the Kensington section of Philadelphia. He brings many years of experience working in Hispanic ministry. Born in West Philadelphia and ordained a priest in 1972, he began serving Hispanic Catholics and studying the language in 1981 at Incarnation of Our Lord Parish in Philadelphia, then later in South and Central America, the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico.

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

"peace Day" Kicks Off Summer Food Service Program

July 13, 2005

"PEACE DAY" KICKS OFF
SUMMER FOOD SERVICE PROGRAM

Peace is the theme for the Summer Food Service Program of Nutritional Development Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. The theme was chosen in response to the escalating violence toward young people in the Philadelphia Region in the past several months. On "Peace Day" children participating in the program will have the opportunity to be involved in peace-themed activities including collage making, book sharing, and crafts.

The Summer Food Service Program provides nutritious meals and teaches lessons on healthy eating to thousands of area children.


Thursday, July 14, 2005
11:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
Mt. Airy Church of God in Christ
6401 Ogontz Avenue
Philadelphia



The Summer Food Service Program serves children regardless of religion. Approximately 90 percent are non-Catholic. 100 children attend Mt. Airy Church of God in Christ each day. Mt. Airy Church of God in Christ is one of approximately 500 sites throughout the Philadelphia area served by Nutritional Development Services' Summer Food Service Program. Other sites include camps, bible schools and enrichment programs.

The children receive either breakfast and a snack or breakfast and lunch. The free meals consist of sandwiches, milk and fresh fruit. The program also teaches children about nutrition and fitness.

The Summer Food Service Program is funded by the United States Department of Agriculture and is sponsored in the Philadelphia area by Nutritional Development Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Department of Recreation and the Philadelphia Housing Authority.

####

Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

Catholic Social Services Program Helps Older Adults Get Back To Work

July 26, 2005

Catholic Social Services Program Helps Older Adults Get Back to Work

Low-income men and women ages 55 and over continue to be productive workers and supplement their incomes through Catholic Social Services' Senior Community Service Employment Program. The program is funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Labor and sponsored by the National Council on the Aging.

Senior participants receive a subsidized income while they are developing skills needed to obtain higher paying non-subsidized employment. The salary consists of minimum hourly wage for 20 hours per week of on-the-job training in such fields as providing social services to other seniors, educational services (particularly literacy tutoring), clerical support, cooking and dietary duties, light building maintenance, child care, community beautification and other diverse job placements. Participants must be residents of Philadelphia, but may work in the city and surrounding region.

More than 100 seniors participate in the program which is offered at 60 training sites throughout Philadelphia. Last year 36 participating seniors left the program after securing better paying, non-subsidized jobs. This underscores the overall goal of the program: to help senior adults become self-sufficient through training, job development and eventual placements in non-subsidized employment.

The National Council on the Aging is celebrating its 40th year of the Senior Community Service Employment Program, administered locally since 2003 by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia's Catholic Social Services. Participating agencies and businesses continue to discover that hiring mature, reliable and well-trained older adults is good for business, the community and seniors themselves.

For more information on the Senior Employment Program, contact Administrator Kevin Barr at 215-854-7030.

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Don Guanella School To Host 10th Annual N.b.a. Referee Clinic

July 29, 2005

DON GUANELLA SCHOOL TO HOST
10TH ANNUAL N.B.A. REFEREE CLINIC

Don Guanella School along with six N.B.A. referees will host the 10th annual N.B.A. Referee Clinic. The National Basketball Association referees, who will work with the students of Don Guanella, are Duke Callahan, Tim Donaghy, Mark Wunderlick, Ed Malloy, Joe Crawford and Steve Javie. Hip-Hop, the mascot of the Philadelphia 76ers, will also be on hand to assist and entertain the young men.

Don Guanella School is a facility operated by Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in Springfield, Delaware County, for boys with a wide variety of disabilities ranging in age from five to 21.

Monday, August 1, 2005
1:00 p.m.
Cardinal Krol Center Gym
Route 320
Springfield, Delaware County



The referees will conduct basketball drills in shooting, dribbling and passing. Some of the special needs students will participate in a "referee imitation" contest. The N.B.A. referees and Hip-Hop will give away t-shirts and hats.


###



Editor's note: For more information, please contact Robert Neely, Activities Director at Don Guanella School at 610-543-1418, Ext. 309.

Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

300 Young Catholics From Philadelphia Traveling To Germany For World Youth Day

August 9, 2005

300 Young Catholics From Philadelphia Traveling to Germany for World Youth Day

Hundreds of Philadelphians are preparing to meet Pope Benedict XVI and an expected 800,000 young Catholics in Germany for World Youth Day, August 21, 2005. One group of 45 Catholic youths and young adults will travel together to the international event for young people in Cologne, Germany.

A chartered bus for 45 Philadelphia Catholics departs Sunday, August 14, 2005 at 10:00 a.m. from the Archdiocesan Office Center, 222 North 17th Street. It travels to New York where participants board a flight to Cologne, Germany. The bus returns to the Office Center on Monday, August 22, 2005 at approximately 7:30 p.m.

The group is part of a contingent of 302 Catholics from across the Archdiocese, representing 14 parish and school youth groups, colleges and families. Most pilgrims on the trip are young adults of college age; only 14 attend high school. All raised their own money for the trip, plus donations from parishes and other interested sponsors. The St. Martin de Porres Foundation is sponsoring six African American Catholics for the trip.

Cardinal Justin Rigali will also attend World Youth Day. He will celebrate Mass for the Philadelphia contingent with a morning Mass on Saturday, August 20 in Cologne. Following Mass and testimonies of faith by the youths, the Cardinal will bless them as they depart on a three- to five-mile hike to the city's central pilgrimage site.

World Youth Day, instituted by Pope John Paul II and held every two to three years, consists of nearly a week of spiritual, educational and cultural events designed to help young people from around the world learn about each other and their faith.

Events include days of education, questions and answers, personal faith testimony, music and cultural festivals, Masses and prayer services. They culminate with the hike and overnight gathering to the site where Pope Benedict will celebrate Mass on August 21.


###

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Lead Prayer On The Parkway

August 17, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI TO LEAD PRAYER ON THE PARKWAY

Cardinal Justin Rigali is asking all Catholics in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to witness their faith by joining him at Logan Square in Philadelphia for Prayer on the Parkway. This is the Archdiocesan closing event of the Year of the Eucharist.


Sunday, September 18, 2005
6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Logan Square ~ Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia


The 274 parishes of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia (made up of Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties) as well as schools and other Catholic institutions are organizing buses and making plans to attend this evening of prayer. Cardinal Rigali and the Auxiliary Bishops of Philadelphia will process from the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul with the Blessed Sacrament to an altar on Logan Square for the Holy Hour of Prayer. The thousands assembled will join together in songs of praise and prayer concluding with Benediction, which honors the Blessed Sacrament, the real presence of Christ.
###



Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

It's Back To School In The Archdiocese Of Philadelphia

August 30, 2005

IT'S BACK TO SCHOOL
IN THE ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA

Students attending parish elementary schools as well as Archdiocesan high schools and schools of special education will return to class the week after Labor Day for the 2005-2006 school year. Elementary schools open on Wednesday, September 7th. The high schools have developed individual opening week schedules and students will follow a phase-in schedule on September 7th and 8th and all students will report on Friday, September 9th.

Across the Archdiocese

Prayer on the Parkway: Come Celebrate Christ's Eucharistic Presence
Students from across the Archdiocese will take part in this celebration of Catholic faith on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia on Sunday, September 18, 2005 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Tens of thousands of Catholics are expected to attend this Holy Hour of prayer.

3,000 Elementary School Teachers Come Together for Workshops
The Office of Catholic Education will host nine workshops in September 2005. One of the speakers, Charlotte Danielson, is internationally known for creating A Framework for Teaching which underscores the focus and attention that today's classroom teachers must provide for the students in their care.

Early Childhood Conference
More than 500 Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten teachers came together on Monday, August 29th to participate in a Fine Arts Conference in Philadelphia. The Conference, sponsored by the Office of Catholic Education, aims to serve the teachers of our youngest students as they incorporate Music, Art, Dance, Drama and Song into their instruction for our three to five year old students. Red Grammer, a nationally known musician, is the featured presenter.


WHAT'S NEW IN ARCHDIOCESAN HIGH SCHOOLS
Conwell-Egan Catholic High School in Fairless Hills, Bucks County
The members of the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) recently elected Dr. Lorraine Rice, President of Conwell-Egan, to the National Executive Committee. Also this year, Conwell-Egan's new state-of-the-art television studio will capture much of the excitement of opening week. The new studio was made possible through a $27,500 grant from the Connelly Foundation. The technical skills learned here are integrated into the newly added courses in Broadcast Journalism and Cinematic Studies at the school. The school is also adding a Forensic Science/Bio-Ethics course.

Kennedy-Kenrick Catholic High School in Montgomery County begins the new KK Scholars Program for 20 members of the Class of 2009. The accelerated academic program will enable students to earn up to 30 college credits upon graduation. The school is also introducing two new elective courses, Sociology and Video Production.

John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls' High School in Philadelphia welcomes parents for a Back-to-School night and Parents' Association meeting on September 22nd at 6:30 p.m. On Friday, September 23rd, students will enjoy their Back-to-School dance; the theme this year is "Wild, Wild West."

The football teams of Cardinal O'Hara High School in Springfield, Delaware County and Archbishop Wood High School in Warminster, Bucks County, are headed to the shore. The two teams will face off on Saturday, September 3rd of Labor Day weekend for an 11:00 a.m. game at Ocean City High School in New Jersey.

Bishop Shanahan High School in Downingtown, Chester County hosted Freshman Welcome Evenings on August 22nd and 23rd for the Class of 2009. The incoming freshen learned the alma mater, played get-to-know-you games and enjoyed a dinner party. The evenings concluded with parents of the new freshmen participating with their children in a prayer service.

Bishop McDevitt H.S. in Wyncote, Montgomery County, begins its 48th year the first week in September. A comprehensive 34-hour PSAT/SAT program will be available to prepare students for fall testing. This year the school initiates a Video Design and Production course offered by Chestnut Hill College but taught at Bishop McDevitt H.S.

Archbishop Wood High School in Warminster, Bucks County will host a Freshmen Welcome Picnic for the Class of 2009 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The day begins with a prayer service followed by orientation and lunch. During September, freshmen homerooms will meet on designated days for retreats led by the campus minister, Rev. Chris Walsh. This will provide an opportunity for students to make the transition from grade school to high school in a positive manner.

WHAT'S NEW IN PARISH ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS

Holy Child Catholic School, the first regional Catholic school in Manayunk opens this year. The school is sponsored by the pastors of St. Mary of the Assumption, St. Lucy and Holy Family parishes. It has a new library and new technology center.

Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament Parish School opens its doors for the first time in September 2005. The school, formed from the consolidation of Our Lady of the Rosary and Our Lady of Victory Parishes in West Philadelphia is located at the former site of Our Lady of the Rosary Parish.

Saint Anthony of Padua Parish in Ambler, Montgomery County opens its new Parish Education Center which will be blessed by Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia on Thursday, September 8th at 7:00 p.m.

Cardinal Rigali will celebrate the Opening Mass of the school year at Pope John Paul II Catholic School in Bridesburg (formed from the former All Saints School and Saint John Cantius School) on Friday, September 9th at 9:00 a.m.

In Philadelphia, Saint Bernard School begins the school year with the theme "Enter a New Journey" of Faith, Hope, Light and Love. The school community has come together for a "summer makeover" of the school. More than 70 teachers, parents, students and alumni have put in endless hours to work on biblical murals, painting projects, a student art gallery and a media room. Students at St. Jerome School will begin the 50th anniversary celebration of the parish with a special Mass on October 7th.

In Delaware County, St. Kevin Parish Pre-School in Springfield begins its 20th year of caring for and educating the youngest students. St. Madeline-St. Rose School in Ridley Park welcomes four new faculty members. Saint Denis Parish holds its annual Penny Walk on September 23rd, with proceeds supporting outreach programs of the Mercy sisters who staff the school.


In Montgomery County, Visitiation B.V.M. in Trooper will dedicate the newly renovated school facility and addition on Sunday, September 18th. Saint Genevieve School in Flourtown marks 50 years of Catholic education this year. The Anniversary Celebration opens on Sunday September 11th at the 11:45 a.m. Sunday Mass followed by refreshments and an Open House. St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Norristown continues its high-tech ways with expansion of e-mail access between parents and all teachers as well as homework access on the school web site, www.sfacatholic.org., which is maintained on the school's own high speed T-1 line. Saint Rose of Lima School in North Wales is adding an after school CARES Program.

In Bucks County, Saint Jude School in Chalfont opens with the theme "Our Future is Now" as the school comes closer to the completion of the building project that began in 2004. In addition to a new building, set for completion in January 2006, Saint Jude School is also happy to open its new Pre-School program for three year olds with balloons and music for its youngest students as they enter the school. In Warminster, Nativity of Our Lord Parish and school community will celebrate the parish's 50th anniversary this year.

In Chester County, another school named after Pope John Paul II is under construction on the property of St. Peter Parish in Honeybrook. It is the first school to be built as a regional school and will include all of the students from the four Coatesville parishes. The school is scheduled to open in September 2006.

WHAT'S NEW WITH THE SCHOOLS OF SPECIAL EDUCATION
Two of the five schools are celebrating very special Anniversaries! Cardinal Rigali will a celebrate Mass marking the 25th anniversary of Queen of the Universe Day School on Sunday, September 25th at 11:00 a.m. at Conwell-Egan High School. The Cardinal will also celebrate a Mass marking the 50th Anniversary of St. Lucy Day School for Children with Visual Impairments on Saturday, November 19th at 2:00 p.m. at St. Alice Parish in Upper Darby. Our Lady of Confidence Day School in Willow Grove and Philadlelphia, has been awarded a $10,770 grant from The Hackett Foundation for Learning comes alive: Integrating Whiteboards into the Special Education Classroom.




STATISTICS

Parish Elementary Schools: 194
Elementary School Enrollment for 2004-2005: 69,225

Archdiocesan High Schools: 21
Archdiocesan High School Enrollment for 2004-2005: 21,981

Schools of Special Education: 5
Special Education Enrollment: 327



Editor's Note: Enrollment figures for the 2005-2006 school year
will not be available until November 2005.

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Celebrate Mass For 10th Anniversary Of The St. Peter Claver Center For Evangelization

September 2, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI TO CELEBRATE MASS
FOR 10TH ANNIVERSARY OF
THE ST. PETER CLAVER CENTER FOR EVANGELIZATION

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will be the celebrant and homilist for the 10th Anniversary of the Saint Peter Claver Center for Evangelization. The Cardinal will also bless and rededicate the Historical Marker on the corner of 12th & Lombard Streets.


Friday, September 9, 2005
Blessing Ceremony - 6:30 p.m.
Mass - 7:00 p.m.
Saint Peter Claver Center for Evangelization
12th & Lombard Streets
Philadelphia



The Saint Peter Claver Center for Evangelization was founded on September 1, 1995. The site is considered holy ground because since 1886 it has served as a home for Black Catholics in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

The Center, under the direction of Mrs. Carolyn Jenkins, and in cooperation with the Archdiocesan Office for Black Catholics, serves as a place for workshops, retreats and other gatherings to promote the Catholic faith among African Americans.

2005 also marks the 25th Anniversary of the Office for Black Catholics. Information will be available at a later date regarding a Jubilee Reception to be held in November.

####

Editor's Note: For more information, please contact Dr. Germaine Edwards, at 215-888-3697.

Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Celebrate Mass For Victims And Survivors Of Hurricane Katrina

September 7, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI TO CELEBRATE
MASS FOR VICTIMS AND SURVIVORS
OF HURRICANE KATRINA


Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will be the celebrant and homilist at a Mass at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul to remember those who lost their lives or are suffering in any way due to the hurricane. All are welcome and media are invited to cover.


Friday, September 9, 2005
12:05 p.m.
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia


The Cardinal has also asked that all 274 parishes of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia hold a special collection during Sunday Masses as soon as possible to assist with relief efforts.

All funds donated by parishioners will be forwarded by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to Catholic Charities USA. Catholic Charities USA, which has been commissioned by the U.S. Catholic Bishops to represent the Catholic community in times of domestic disaster, responds with emergency and long-term assistance as needed. Its Disaster Response Office connects the Church's social service agencies and disaster planning offices across the nation. For more information, please visit www.catholiccharitiesusa.org or call 1-800-919-9338.

###


Editor's Note: There will be a mult-box feed for the Mass on September 9th. Television cameras will not be permitted in the Cathedral. Reporters and still photographers will be permitted inside with limited movement. Live trucks please enter the Archdiocesan parking lot on 17th Street between Vine and Race Streets.






Contact
Donna M. Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Office For Black Catholics Joins In Efforts To Support The Victims Of Hurricane Katrina

September 8, 2005

OFFICE FOR BLACK CATHOLICS JOINS IN EFFORTS
TO SUPPORT THE VICTIMS OF HURRICANE KATRINA

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia Office for Black Catholics along with other Archdiocesan offices is responding to the call for prayers and financial support for the victims of Hurricane Katrina. The Office for Black Catholics will offer several opportunities for area faithful to help.

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will be the celebrant and homilist for the Mass celebrating the 10th Anniversary of the Saint Peter Claver Center for Evangelization. During the Mass, special prayers will be offered and a collection will be taken for the victims of Hurricane Katrina.


Friday, September 9, 2005
Mass - 7:00 p.m.
Saint Peter Claver Center for Evangelization
12th and Lombard Streets
Philadelphia



In addition, the Office for Black Catholics will hold a benefit concert for hurricane victims. It will take place at 7:00 p.m. at Saint Raymond Church on Vernon Road & Williams Avenue in Philadelphia, Friday, September 23, 2005. The concert will feature various choirs from the Black Catholic Community. At this concert a collection will be taken. All donations will be forwarded to hurricane victims through Catholic Charities USA.

2005 also marks the 25th anniversary of the Office for Black Catholics. Information will be available at a later date regarding a Jubilee Reception to be held in November.

Note: The Office for Black Catholics requests special prayers for all victims, and especially for the students and faculty of Xavier Prep and Xavier University and the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, founded by Saint Katharine Drexel of Philadelphia.

###









Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

Efforts Continue In The Archdiocese Of Philadelphia To Assist Those Devastated By Hurricane Katrina.

September 8, 2005

Efforts Continue in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to Assist Those Devastated by Hurricane Katrina.

CARDINAL RIGALI TO CELEBRATE SPECIAL MASS
Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will celebrate a Mass to remember those who lost their lives and those affected in any way by the hurricane at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul on Friday, September 9, 2005 at 12:05 p.m. All are welcome to attend and media are invited to cover.

PARISHES, SCHOOLS, ORGANIZATIONS COLLECT FOR RELIEF EFFORT
Cardinal Rigali has also asked all 274 parishes in the Archdiocese to hold special collections as soon as possible to assist in the relief effort. All donations will be forwarded to Catholic Charities USA. (www.catholiccharitiesusa.org.) Some parishes took up spontaneous collections this past weekend while other parishes scheduled their collections for upcoming weekends. Pastors report tremendous generosity. (Parishioners in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia donated more than $2.64 million to tsunami relief efforts earlier this year.)

Students in the 194 parish elementary schools, all parish religious education programs and 21 Archdiocesan high schools are asked to participate in the relief collection of the National Catholic Educational Association's. Information regarding Child to Child: A Catholic Campaign to Aid Education can be found at www.ncea.org. Students will be asked to contribute one dollar to be designated for the educational needs of the young people in the affected areas.

OFFICE FOR BLACK CATHOLICS OF THE ARCHDIOCESE REACHES OUT
During a Mass to Celebrate the Tenth Anniversary of the Saint Peter Claver Center (12th & Lombard Streets in Philadelphia) at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, September 9th, special prayers and a collection will be taken. Cardinal Rigali is the celebrant and homilist. The Saint Peter Claver Center offers evangelization and service to the Black Catholic Community. Media are welcome to cover.

Choirs from the Black Catholic community will hold a Benefit Concert at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, September 23, 2005 at Saint Raymond Parish (Vernon Road & Williams Avenue, Philadelphia). Any choir wishing to participate should contact the Office for Black Catholics as soon as possible at 215-587-3634.

SPIRITUAL AND MATERIAL ASSISTANCE FOR NEW ARRIVALS
Priests from the Archdiocese have begun to visit the Wanamaker School site to offer spiritual comfort to those newly arrived in Philadelphia.

Catholic Social Services (CSS) is also working to provide care for those affected by Hurricane Katrina who will make the Philadelphia area their temporary home. CSS, working with the Department of Human Services, is prepared to use its already established network of group homes and foster care services to care for those young people who might arrive in Philadelphia without an adult.

Some of those who lost everything due to Katrina will be coming to the Philadelphia area assisted by relatives or friends rather than relief agencies. Catholic Social Services (CSS) is available to assist families in the resettlement process. CSS will provide emotional services, social services and financial support as available within its means. While families have opened up their homes to loved ones displaced by this disaster, they might lack the resources to provide for their relatives immediate and long-term needs. CSS is here to help.

Many generous people are offering to open their homes to not just to family but to people they have never met. CSS will collaborate with Catholic Charities USA in the Operation Home Away From Home initiative. (Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia is a member agency of Catholic Charities-USA.) CSS will assist in gathering housing information to contribute to a data base being organized on a national level. If someone in the Philadelphia area wishes to be included in that data base, they may call Catholic Social Services at 215-587-3900. It is important to note that the people displaced from their homes will need housing assistance for a minimum of 90 to 180 days.


###

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Lead Prayers For Victims Of Hurricane Katrina

September 12, 2005

Cardinal Rigali to Lead Prayers for Victims of Hurricane Katrina

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia is hosting an interreligious prayer service in response to President Bush's call for a National Day of Prayer and Remembrance for victims of Hurricane Katrina. Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, invites people of all faiths to come together and pray for those affected by the storm.

Interreligious Prayer Service for Victims of Hurricane Katrina
Thursday, September 15, 2005
5:00 p.m.
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia


Religious leaders who have indicated their participation at this time include:

Rabbi Michael Holzman, Congregation Rodeph Shalom
Imam Anwar Muhaiman, International Muslim Brotherhood
Rev. Steven Lawrence, White Rock Baptist Church and President, Board of Metropolitan Christian Council

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Archdiocese Of Philadelphia Continues To Assist Those Devastated By Hurricane Katrina

September 15, 2005

ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA CONTINUES TO ASSIST
THOSE DEVASTATED BY HURRICANE KATRINA

CARDINAL RIGALI TO LEAD INTERFAITH PRAYER SERVICE
Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, invites people of all faiths to pray together in response to President Bush's call for a National Day of Prayer and Remembrance for victims of Hurricane Katrina. The Interfaith Prayer Service for Victims of Hurricane Katrina will be held Thursday, September 15, 2005 at 5:00 p.m. in the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul, 18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia. Religious leaders who have indicated their participation at this time include: Rabbi Michael Holzman, Congregation Rodeph Shalom; Imam Anwar Muhaiman, International Muslim Brotherhood; and Rev. Steven Lawrence, White Rock Baptist Church and President, Board of Metropolitan Christian Council.

CATHOLIC SCHOOLS WELCOME STUDENTS FROM AFFECTED REGION
Saints John Neumann and Maria Goretti High School has enrolled a young man at the South Philadelphia Archdiocesan high school after his evacuation from New Orleans with his father. Both are natives of Rwanda, where the boy's mother and sister were killed in civil strife prior to coming to this country. At this time, 14 young people from the storm-ravaged Gulf Coast region have been enrolled in four Archdiocesan Catholic high schools and four parish elementary schools. Students in the 194 parish elementary schools, all parish religious education programs and 21 Archdiocesan high schools are asked to participate in the relief collection of the National Catholic Educational Association's Child to Child program, details of which can be found at www.ncea.org. Students are asked to contribute one dollar to be designated for the educational needs of the young people in the affected areas.

CATHOLIC SOCIAL SERVICES ASSISTING RELIEF EFFORTS
Three social workers of Catholic Social Services (CSS) of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia are ready for deployment to the Gulf Coast. The names of the three women, all long-time staff members with extensive experience in clinical counseling and case management, have been sent to Catholic Charities USA, which is coordinating the relief efforts of all Catholic dioceses in the United States. CSS has to date responded to 17 requests for assistance from victims of Hurricane Katrina. Individuals displaced from the affected area, living with family members within the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, have received assistance, information or referrals for emergency aid, housing and financial assistance. Approximately 50 people to date have offered to open their homes to displaced people in the affected region. CSS is assisting in gathering housing information to contribute to a database being organized on a national level. If someone in the Philadelphia area wishes to share their home, they may call Catholic Social Services at 215-587-3900 to be included in the database.

NUTRITIONAL DEVELOPMENT SERVICES DONATING FOOD AID
This agency of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia's Catholic Human Services donated $20,000 from its Operation Rice Bowl program to Catholic Community Services of Baton Rouge to be used for food aid to hurricane victims. NDS is also planning a food drive, to begin later this month, in which grade school, high school and college students throughout the Archdiocese can contribute plastic jars of peanut butter and jelly to the Greater New Orleans Food Bank, now relocated in Baton Rouge and operated by the Archdiocese of New Orleans.

OFFICE FOR BLACK CATHOLICS TO HOST BENEFIT CONCERT
Choirs from the Black Catholic community will hold a Benefit Concert at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, September 23, 2005 at Saint Raymond Parish (Vernon Road & Williams Avenue, Philadelphia). Any choir wishing to participate should contact the Office for Black Catholics as soon as possible at 215-587-3634.

PARISHES COLLECT FOR RELIEF EFFORT
Cardinal Rigali has asked all 274 parishes in the Archdiocese to hold special collections as soon as possible to assist in the relief effort. All donations will be forwarded to Catholic Charities USA. (www.catholiccharitiesusa.org.)


###



Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Lead Prayer On The Parkway<br> Tens Of Thousands Expected To Attend

September 15, 2005

Cardinal Rigali to Lead Prayer on the Parkway

Tens of Thousands Expected to Attend

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, is asking all Catholics in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to witness their faith by joining him at Logan Square in Philadelphia for Prayer on the Parkway. This is the Archdiocesan closing event of the Year of the Eucharist.

Those attending will gather around an altar adjacent to the fountain at Logan Square on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia. The altar will be 13 feet high and also have an eight foot cross. The thousands assembled will join together in songs of praise and prayer concluding with Benediction, which honors the Blessed Sacrament, the real presence of Christ.

At 5:30 p.m. an honor guard will process from the Chapel of the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul toward the altar. At 5:45 p.m., Cardinal Rigali, Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua, Archbishop Emeritus, as well as the Auxiliary Bishops of Philadelphia will process from the center doors of the Cathedral through the Sister Cities Plaza. The Procession will move on the Free Library side of the Parkway to the altar which will be located on the traffic island.

Sunday, September 18, 2005
5:30 p.m. Honor guard processes from Cathedral
5:45 p.m. Cardinals and Bishops process from Cathedral
6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Prayer on the Parkway
Logan Square ~ Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia


The 274 parishes of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia (made up of Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties) as well as schools and other Catholic institutions are organizing buses and making plans to attend this evening of prayer.

There will be prayer petitions in five languages: English, Spanish, Vietnamese, Igbo and Tagalog. There will also be a special intercessory prayer for the victims of Hurricane Katrina. Students from Cardinal Dougherty High School will carry flags representing countries of the world, demonstrating the diversity of the Archdiocese.

Editor's Note: A media riser will be available across from the altar near the 20th Street intersection. A mult-box will be located next to the press riser.

###

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Office For Black Catholics To Host Benefit Concert For Hurricane Katrina Victims

September 21, 2005

OFFICE FOR BLACK CATHOLICS TO HOST BENEFIT CONCERT
FOR HURRICANE KATRINA VICTIMS

Choirs from the Black Catholic community will hold a Benefit Concert at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, September 23, 2005 at Saint Raymond Parish (Vernon Road & Williams Avenue, Philadelphia) for those affected by Hurricane Katrina. Ten choirs are scheduled to perform. A special collection will be taken up and all donations sent to Catholic Charities USA.




Friday, September 23, 2005
7:00 p.m.
Saint Raymond Parish
Vernon Road and Williams Avenue
Philadelphia



For more information, contact the Office for Black Catholics at 215-587-3634.

2005 also marks the 25th anniversary of the Office for Black Catholics. Information will be available at a later date regarding a Jubilee Reception to be held in November.

Note: The Office for Black Catholics requests special prayers for all victims, and especially for the students and faculty of Xavier Prep and Xavier University and the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, founded by Saint Katharine Drexel of Philadelphia.

###









Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali Accepts Inquirer's Apology For Headline/lead Story

September 23, 2005

Cardinal Rigali Accepts Inquirer's Apology for Headline/Lead Story

Philadelphia, September 23, 2005 -- Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, today issued the following statement in response to an apology issued by the Philadelphia Inquirer for a story and headline which ran on the front page of today's Inquirer.

Cardinal Rigali said, "Today, I received a statement of apology from the Philadelphia Inquirer for its false headline and misleading story which ran in today's paper. I appreciate the forthright manner in which the Inquirer handled this matter. I accept their apology and reiterate the fact that I never said that Catholics should not read the report. I only said that it was not of value for families. I also take this opportunity to reiterate my heartfelt and sincere apologies to the victims of clergy sexual abuse and my continued prayers for healing."

###

The Philadelphia Inquirer issued the following press release on Friday, September 23:

The following is a statement from
Amanda Bennett, editor of The Philadelphia Inquirer:

A front-page article and headline published in the Friday, September 23
edition of The Philadelphia Inquirer about Cardinal Justin Rigali's views of
the grand jury report on sexual abuse by priests incorrectly summarized his
statements. In response to a question, Cardinal Rigali said that the report
was "graphic," "slanted" and of questionable value to families, but made no
statement saying whether Catholics should read the report.

The Inquirer wants its news report to be fair and correct in every
respect, and regrets when it is not.

If you have a question or comment, contact Amanda Bennett by phone at
215-854-2529; or mail at The Inquirer, Box 8263, Philadelphia, PA 19101; or
e-mail abennett@phillynews.com.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Statement Regarding Reverend Robert L. Brennan Reverend John H. Mulholland

September 26, 2005

STATEMENT REGARDING
REVEREND ROBERT L. BRENNAN
REVEREND JOHN H. MULHOLLAND

Reverend Robert L. Brennan and Reverend John H. Mulholland have been the focus of extraordinary attention. After the two priests were consulted, Cardinal Rigali has relieved them of their assignments, effective Sunday, September 25, 2005. Until such time as a permanent, long-term plan can be determined, both priests will remain without assignments.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Archdiocese Announces Administrative Restructuring Of Two High Schools

September 30, 2005

ARCHDIOCESE ANNOUNCES ADMINISTRATIVE
RESTRUCTURING OF TWO HIGH SCHOOLS

The Office of Catholic Education of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia announces an administrative restructuring of Monsignor Bonner High School for Boys and Archbishop Prendergast High School for Girls. The two schools are located next to each other on the same property in Drexel Hill, Delaware County.

In order to continue the tradition of single-sex education and to enhance the delivery of educational services effectively and efficiently, Archbishop Prendergast High School and Monsignor Bonner High School will become a co-institutional high school effective July 1, 2006. The excellent faith-formation that was provided by each school will be strengthened and enriched as the schools go forward to form and inform students in the Catholic faith. This new administrative model which will include one president, one principal, three assistant principals and 2 coordinators for academic affairs and student services, will enable single sex education to be maintained in both buildings for the core curriculum while allowing all students to participate fully in a full compliment of AP subjects and a variety of elective course from both schools.

In October 2005, a Steering Committee will be formed to review and coordinate the planning for the new administrative model. There will be committees to address Catholic identity and mission, academics, technology, recruitment, student services and student affairs, as well as finances and facilities issues.

Background
Sharing the same campus, the schools have collaborated for years while maintaining their unique identities. There have been co-educational classes conducted in certain electives and advanced placement classes for years. As the enrollment decreases, costs increase. In 1963, Monsignor Bonner housed 3,173 students while Archbishop Prendergast housed 3,733 students. The combined enrollment at both schools is now 1,754. In order to effectively and efficiently deliver educational services to a new generation of students, a new model of administration is needed.

History
In 1952, to meet an increased need for high schools in the growing suburbs, Cardinal O'Hara established Archbishop Prendergast High School for Boys in the building which formerly housed Saint Vincent's orphanage. Three years later, a new school building was built on the same campus and named Monsignor Bonner High School for Boys. Archbishop Prendergast was then designated as a school for girls.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director
215-587-3747

First Hispanic Heritage Mass In Archdiocese Of Philadelphia Set For Sunday, October 9th

October 4, 2005

FIRST HISPANIC HERITAGE MASS
IN ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA SET FOR SUNDAY, OCTOBER 9TH

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia, through its office for Hispanic Catholics, has scheduled its first Hispanic Heritage Mass to take place at 2:30 p.m. at the Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul on 18th Street in Philadelphia, Sunday, October 9, 2005, to coincide with Hispanic Heritage Month. The procession will begin at 2:00 p.m.

Though the Cathedral has hosted a number of Masses of individual Hispanic cultural groups, this is the first time a Mass celebrating equally all the Hispanic nations of the Americas will take place under the auspices of the Archdiocese's Office of Hispanic Catholics (OHC). The Mass acknowledges not only a rapidly-growing Hispanic presence in Philadelphia and its suburbs, but also the increasing diversity within that Hispanic community.

Organized by OHC and a committee of community people representing nearly every Latin American nation, the Mass will be celebrated, in Spanish, by Auxiliary Bishop Joseph R. Cistone. The homilist will be Msgr. Hugh J. Shields, the Vicar for Hispanic Catholics of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. The Mass will be followed by a reception with Hispanic food, music and dance.

"We want to celebrate the pride we feel in being Hispanic," said Anna C. Vega, director of the Office of Hispanic Catholics. "We have very rich cultures and traditions that enable us to celebrate our faith together - many nations, one faith."

Committee members from each of the five counties in the Archdiocese (Philadelphia, Delaware, Chester, Bucks and Montgomery counties) are available for interviews regarding local parish involvement in this first-time event; they will also be able to provide insight the event's significance to the distinct Hispanic Catholic communities.

For regional contact information, or for photos of Hispanic events sponsored previously by the OHC, please call the Office of Hispanic Catholics at 215-587-3591, or e-mail at hiscath@adphila.org.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Office For Black Catholics Hosts Historic Art Exhibit

October 4, 2005

OFFICE FOR BLACK CATHOLICS HOSTS HISTORIC ART EXHIBIT

BLACK CATHOLICS IN PHILADELPHIA: THE EARLY YEARS


The Archdiocese of Philadelphia Office for Black Catholics is hosting an historic art exhibit entitled, Black Catholics in Philadelphia: The Early Years. The exhibit at the African American Museum traces the history of African-American Catholics in Philadelphia for the time period beginning in 1743.



October 4, 2005 to November 6, 2005
The African American Museum
701 Arch Street
Philadelphia



In addition there will be a special reception held in honor of the exhibit on October 9th from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at the museum. The exhibit coincides with two milestones. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Office for Black Catholics and the 10th anniversary of the St. Peter Claver Center for Evangelization, which serves as a place for workshops, retreats and other gatherings to promote the Catholic faith among African Americans.

###

Editor's Note: For more information, please contact Dr. Germaine Edwards, at 215-888-3697








Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

Procesión Y Misa En Reconocimiento De La Herencia Hispana

October 4, 2005

Procesión y Misa en Reconocimiento de la Herencia Hispana

Por este medio deseamos informarle que la Arquidiócesis de Filadelfia celebrará una procesión y misa en reconocimiento de la Herencia Hispana, el domingo 9 de octubre del 2005 en la Catedral Basilica de San Pedro y San Pablo en la calle 18 y el Parkway, a la que TODOS están invitados. Esta Misa celebrará la diversidad y la unidad del pueblo hispano católico de la Arquidiócesis. En los últimos años, la Arquidiócesis de Filadelfia ha sido bendecida por miles de inmigrantes provenientes de paises de toda Latinoamérica, con tradiciones enraizadas en la fe católica; estos hermanos y hermanas han enriquecido nuestras parroquias con sus dones y vitalidad.

En unión, se celebrará el hecho de que el hispano ha existido en estas tierras desde hace muchos siglos y ha contribuido en innumerables formas a la grandeza de esta nación. Se celebrará el orgullo de ser hispano; se celebrará una cultura llena de riquezas; se celebrará una fe heredada de antepasados católicos.

Como pueblo Mariano, los hispanos honrarán a sus vírgenes patronas, en gratitud por el constante amor y protección hacia sus hijos dispersos por todas las partes del mundo. Sus creencias, costumbres e idioma los han mantenido firmes como pueblo durante más de quinientos años. Que se mantenga siempre esta unión y celebren con dignidad y orgullo la Herencia Hispana siempre recordando que somos "Muchos rostros en la casa de Dios".


La OFICINA DEL VICARIO PARA HISPANOS CATÓLICOS
invita a TODOS a la
MISA Y PROCESIÓN del domingo 9 de octubre, a las 2:00 p.m.



Para más información llame al 215-587-3786














PRESS RELEASE


The Archdiocese of Philadelphia announces the celebration of a Mass and Procession in recognition of Hispanic Hertiage, Sunday, October 9, 2005 at the Cathedral Basilica of Sts. Peter & Paul, 18th & the Parkway. EVERYONE is invited! This event will begin at 2:00 p.m. The Mass will celebrate the diversity and the unity of Hispanic Catholics throughout the Archdiocese. In recent years, the Archdiocese of Philadelphia has been blessed by thousands of immigrants from Latin America and Spain, with traditions that are deeply rooted in the Catholic faith and which have enriched our parishes with their gifts and vitality.

In unity, Hispanics will celebrate with great pride the existence of a Hispanic culture in this land for many centuries, and the contributions made by Hispanics that have contributed to the greatness of America. We will celebrate our pride in being Hispanic, we will celebrate the richness of the Hispanic culture as well as the Catholic faith inherited from our forefathers.

As a Marian people, the Virgencitas (Blessed Mother), patron saints of Latin American countries, will be honored. Her constant love and protection continue to guide her people that are far away
from their homeland. Their beliefs, customs and language have maintained Hispanics as a people for more than 500 years; they will continue to maintain this unity and celebrate together with dignity and pride their HISPANIC HERITAGE, always REMEMBERING that we are
"Many faces in God's House."

The OFFICE FOR THE VICAR FOR HISPANIC CATHOLICS
invites EVERYONE to the
MASS and PROCESSION on SUNDAY OCTOBER 9, 2005, AT 2:00 P.M.


For more information, please call 215-587-3786

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

World Mission Sunday Re-ignites Missionary Spirit In Archdiocese

October 10, 2005

World Mission Sunday Re-Ignites Missionary Spirit in Archdiocese

In an effort to re-ignite the missionary spirit of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, has taken an inspiring approach to animate the missionary spirit of the faithful.

The program Re-Igniting the Missionary Spirit fosters awareness of the missions in a particular continent each year, based on the Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortations for each of the five continents. This year the Archdiocese is celebrating the missions in Africa, with Asia, America, Europe, and Oceania to follow in subsequent years.

By Divine Providence, this past year's spiritual and educational outreach programs which focused on Africa happened to coincide with the Live 8 and G8 efforts to relieve the debt of African countries. His Eminence saw this as an evangelizing moment and, through radio announcements, explained the peace and justice initiatives, and human service organizations offered through the Church in Africa.

The culmination of this year-long focus will be in October, particularly on Mission Sunday, October 23, 2005 as the universal Church recalls and prays for missionaries around the globe. Cardinal Rigali is pleased to welcome the Papal Nuncio of Sudan, Archbishop Dominic Mamberti, to speak to the faithful at the World Mission Sunday Mass at the Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul. Archbishop Mamberti also serves as the Apostolic Nuncio to Eritrea and formerly served at the Holy See mission to the United Nations.
In addition to the World Mission Sunday Mass, Archbishop Mamberti will speak at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary on Thursday, October 20, 2005. This talk will also coincide with a discussion panel of representatives from Catholic Relief Services, St. Joseph's University, and mission-sending organizations such as the Missionary Sisters of the Holy Rosary.

The collaborative nature of the panel stems from the recent annual conference of the Pontifical Mission Societies of the United States, which was hosted by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia this past April. At the conference, Cardinal Avery Dulles, SJ, spoke on the historical significance of the decree Ad Gentes. Msgr. John Kozar, National Director of the Pontifical Mission Societies in the United States, highlighted the need for collaboration in missionary efforts after his visit to tsunami-affected regions. In an effort to deepen the collaboration and effectiveness of mission and relief efforts, representatives from Catholic Relief Services also spoke.

Contact
Mario Dickerson
The Society for the Propagation of the Faith
215-587-3944

Montgomery County Catholic Parishes, Schools Collecting Aid For Victims Of Hurricane Katrina

October 17, 2005

MONTGOMERY COUNTY CATHOLIC PARISHES, SCHOOLS COLLECTING AID FOR VICTIMS OF HURRICANE KATRINA

Almost 40 Catholic parish religious education programs, schools and youth programs representing more than 11,000 children in Montgomery County are participating in a relief effort for victims of Hurricane Katrina. The participants in the program, Child to Child: The Corporal Works of Mercy in Action, are collecting desperately needed items to be distributed to an "adopted" parish, St. John the Evangelist in Plaquemine, Louisiana.

Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge, Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia, will bless the volunteers and donated items on Saturday, October 22, 2005 at the Corpus Christi Parish parking lot in Lansdale. In addition to the blessing, media are welcome to attend one of two drop-off days.

Corpus Christi Parish
920 Sumneytown Pike
Lansdale

Drop-Off Times
Friday, October 21, 2005
4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Saturday, October 22, 2005
10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Blessing
Saturday, October 22, 2005
2:00 p.m.


Some of the collected items, which will be sent to the adopted parish in Louisiana, include toiletries, school supplies and clothing. On October 24, 2005 the items will be transported in an 18 wheel interstate moving van. The driver has donated his time and the van is also donated.

###


Editor's Note: Jeffrey W. Daley, Director of Religious Education at Saint Philip Neri Parish in Pennsburg, organized the collections. For more information, please contact Mr. Daley at 215-541-3120 or via email at egneri@comcast.net.












Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

Statement From Reverend Joseph W. Bongard President, St. Pius X High School In Pottstown, Montgomery County Regarding Student Bitten By Snake

October 24, 2005

STATEMENT FROM REVEREND JOSEPH W. BONGARD
PRESIDENT, ST. PIUS X HIGH SCHOOL IN POTTSTOWN, MONTGOMERY COUNTY
REGARDING STUDENT BITTEN BY SNAKE

We are very pleased to be able to report that the student was released from the hospital on Saturday. The school community is praying for her and we are grateful that she is back at home with her family so quickly.

The school administration is cooperating fully with the Lower Pottsgrove Police Department. We are conducting an internal investigation, along with the Archdiocese of Philadelphia Office of Catholic Education, into exactly what happened on Friday, October 21, 2005, when the student was bitten by the snake. The school was closed on Friday for an in-service day. When the administration learned that the student had been bitten we contacted police and asked for assistance. After an initial examination of the school, police believed it was safe for St. Pius X to reopen. As an additional safety measure, the school administration brought an animal removal company into the school on Saturday to conduct a search. No snake was found on the premises. School resumed as scheduled today at St. Pius X High School.

We are speaking with students today about what occurred on Friday and wish to assure parents and the community that the safety and well-being of our students is our prime concern. We also continue to pray for the student who was affected by this frightening event.

###

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Office For Black Catholics Celebrates 25th Anniversary

November 3, 2005

Office for Black Catholics Celebrates 25th Anniversary

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia Office for Black Catholics will hold a Jubilee reception to mark their 25th Anniversary. Most Reverend George V. Murry, Bishop of Saint Thomas, Virgin Islands, will serve as the guest speaker.

Saturday, November 5, 2005
7:00 p.m.
Saint Joseph's Preparatory School
17th Street and Girard Avenue
Philadelphia



The Office for Black Catholics facilitates participation of the Black Catholic community in the life of the Church. In addition to the anniversary reception, a Mass of Thanksgiving for the Jubilee of the Office for Black Catholics and the Feast of Saint Martin de Porres will be held.

Sunday, November 6, 2005
2:00 p.m.
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia



###











Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747

Christian Communities To Pray For Victims Of Pakistan Earthquake

November 3, 2005

CHRISTIAN COMMUNITIES TO PRAY FOR VICTIMS OF PAKISTAN EARTHQUAKE

Seven Pakistani Christian communities will join together for a prayer service for victims of the earthquake in Pakistan on Saturday, November 5, at 6:00 p.m. at St. William Catholic Church, Rising Sun and Devereaux Avenues in Philadelphia.

The communities have formed the United Christian Earthquake Relief Fund. Donations will be accepted at the prayer service for this fund, which will be sent to relief agencies in Pakistan. More than 73,000 people perished and 3 million remain homeless after the October 8 quake in a mountainous region of the country.

Participating churches at the service include the Presbyterian Church of Pakistan; New Life Church; Morning Star Church; Asian Church of God; Presbyterian Church of Philadelphia; Indo-Pak Baptist Church; and the Pakistani Apostolate of the Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

The majority of the service will be conducted in the Urdu language.

Editor's Note: For more information, please contact Rev. William Ayres, Director of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia Office for Pastoral Care for Migrants and Refugees, at 215-587-3540.

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali Dedicates Three New Churches This Month

November 18, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI DEDICATES THREE NEW CHURCHES THIS MONTH

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, blesses and dedicates three new parish churches this month; two in Chester County and one in Bucks County.

The Cardinal will dedicate and bless the new church at Saints Simon and Jude Parish in West Chester, Chester County this weekend. Monsignor Francis X. Meehan, Pastor of SS. Simon and Jude, will concelebrate the Mass. The parish serves over 3200 families and the new church will seat approximately 1200 people. The project includes a variety of multi-purpose/meeting rooms and an expanded parking lot. Work on refurbishing the existing church to accommodate expansion of the adjacent parish school will begin immediately. The old church for SS. Simon and Jude Parish opened in 1962 and seated approximately 720.


Dedication at SS. Simon and Jude Parish
Sunday, November 20, 2005
Mass 12:30 p.m.
Intersection of Routes 3 and 352
West Chester, Chester County

Earlier this month, Cardinal Rigali presided at two other dedications of new parish churches:

St. Elizabeth Parish, Upper Uwchlan Township, Chester County New church dedicated November 4th

Cardinal Rigali dedicated the new church for Saint Elizabeth Parish at an evening Mass on Friday, November 4, 2005. Rev. Msgr. Thomas Mullin is the founding pastor and he joined the Cardinal in concelebrating the dedication Mass. The new church is located on the southeast corner of Route 100 (Pottstown Pike) and Fellowship Road. The parish was founded in 2000 to respond to the growing population in the area. For the past five years, while money was being raised and the new church being built, parishioners worshipped in the gymnasium of Lionville Middle School.

Saint Isidore Parish, Quakertown, Bucks County New church dedicated on November 5th
Cardinal Rigali celebrated a Mass of Dedication at Saint Isidore Parish which was concelebrated by the Pastor, Reverend Frederick J. Riegler. Saint Isidore Parish was founded in 1886 and today the parish serves 8000 people. Keeping a tie to the past, a chapel adjacent to the new church makes use of the older church's altar and pews.








Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Local Teens Will "skate With Santa" Fundraiser To Benefit Children In Need

December 2, 2005

LOCAL TEENS WILL "SKATE WITH SANTA"

FUNDRAISER TO BENEFIT CHILDREN IN NEED

Hundreds of area teens will put on their roller skates and join Santa Claus for the annual "Skate with Santa" party sponsored by the Office for Youth and Young Adults of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.


Tuesday, December 6, 2005
6:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Palace Roller Rink
11600 Roosevelt Boulevard
Philadelphia



The monies raised will benefit "Operation Santa Claus," the non-denominational annual toy drive sponsored by the Archdiocese. The teens are members of youth programs in the Archdiocese, the Catholic Youth Organization and Community Service Corps. Last year, "Operation Santa Claus" delivered toys to more than 10,000 children in need in the Philadelphia area. Look for more information regarding the "Operation Santa Claus" in the coming weeks.

###



For more information please contact Tricia Manion, Director of the Office for Youth and Young Adults, Archdiocese of Philadelphia at 215-965-4637.






Contact
Meredith V. Wilson
Communications Specialist
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To "bless The Baby Jesus"

December 2, 2005

Cardinal Rigali to "Bless the Baby Jesus"

Cardinal Rigali invites families and individuals throughout the Archdiocese of Philadelpia to a unique Advent Prayer Service - "Bless the Baby Jesus." Everyone is encouraged to bring an image or figurine of the Baby Jesus perhaps from their family Nativity Creche to be blessed by the Cardinal during the service.

Sunday, December 18, 2005
3:00 p.m.
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia


Families and individuals are also invited to support those in need during this holiday season by bringing a donation for Catholic Social Services or new clothing for infants or young children to the service. This first annual event is an opportunity to reinforce the central place of Jesus Christ, whom we prepare to receive on Christmas, within the family. The service is sponsored by the Family Life Office, Respect LIfe Office and Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Contact
Meredith Wilson
Communications Specialist
215-587-3747

Statement On Potential Legislative Changes To Statute Of Limitations

December 5, 2005

Statement on Potential Legislative Changes
to Statute of Limitations

It has been a priority and a pledge of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia since the United States Bishops adopted the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People in 2002 to do whatever is necessary to ensure that young people in our care are protected. The Archdiocese also strongly supports any strengthening of Pennsylvania laws that would result in more protections for children. The Archdiocese supports

o lifting the criminal statute of limitations and increasing penalties for sexual offenses against children;

o enhancing the Child Protective Services Law's reporting requirements;

o amending the Child Protective Services Law to require background checks in non-school organizations; and

o holding unincorporated associations to the same standard as corporations for offenses relating to the abuse of minors.

The Archdiocese proposes joining these initiatives with a legislative commitment to educate the public regarding any changes in the law as they relate to the protection of children. Experts in this area say that awareness plus knowledge equals prevention. That is why the Archdiocese has trained more than 200,000 adults and young people in Safe Environment programs since 2003. These programs teach adults how to be protectors of children and advocates for young people. Safe Environment programs give young people the tools they need to protect themselves and to resist the overtures of persons in the community who want to prey upon them. All of these programs are ongoing. Children will receive grade appropriate lessons each year and new volunteers and employees who will work with children will receive training.

The Archdiocese is unable to support the retroactive suspension of civil statutes of limitation or a "one year window" in cases of sexual abuse of minors. The Archdiocese believes such a proposal is unfair and unworkable. We are not alone. Editorial writers at some Pennsylvania papers including the Pittsburgh Post Gazette and the Delaware County Daily Times have agreed. It would lead to claims of abuse that happened decades ago being brought forward for the first time or brought back to life after a court initially ruled too much time had passed. As time passes, discovering the truth becomes harder and sometimes even impossible when witnesses are deceased or have moved. Critical records and other evidence may have been lost or discarded because its significance was not realized in the past. It would be fundamentally unfair for the Legislature to authorize a process where only one side of the story can be told. And while the focus is largely on the Catholic Church other institutions would also be affected; presumably such a proposal would be applied to all institutions in Pennsylvania.

In addition, insurance policies secured decades ago will be difficult to enforce if they can even be located. Insurance companies will undoubtedly take the position that their books are "closed" on the policy year when the claim is alleged to have arisen and refuse to defend. In any event, the amount of insurance is significantly inadequate to cover claims whose magnitude is measured by today's standards and not by the standards in place years ago when the alleged conduct occurred.

The only place where such legislation has been attempted is California, where the law is under heavy attack in federal court on constitutional grounds. The enactment of the legislation there has increased the number of pending claims against the Catholic Church from approximately 100 to nearly 1,000. Some cases date to alleged acts in the 1940s and 1950s.

Sadly, the problem of adults in authority abusing children has been present wherever adults supervise children. The incalculable financial impact of a retroactive repeal of the civil statute of limitations will be felt in every corner of Pennsylvania. Public schools, human service agencies, foster parent programs, as well as private social service and education programs throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania will have their programs materially impaired and their missions fatally compromised, if the Legislature enables a process where only one version of what happened a very long time ago can be told.

The Archdiocese alone, in addition to its 274 parishes, 194 elementary schools, 21 high schools and five schools of special education, sponsors a diverse variety of social service agencies and programs which offer a safety net for Catholic and non-Catholic men, women, and children across the Archdiocese. These include adoption services, residential programs for children (including the dependent, neglected, and emotionally troubled), family service centers, housing and homeless services, juvenile justice, mental retardation services, and nutritional development services. These programs, which collectively run at substantial operating deficits each year, will have great difficulty in continuing to offer their services. The assets of the Archdiocese are used to fund these deficits so that we can continue to care for the young, the vulnerable and the needy. Creating another group of victims should not be the result of any legislative changes in Pennsylvania.

Cardinal Rigali has repeatedly offered his most sincere apologies to victims of sexual abuse by clergy. He continues to offer to meet with any victim who wishes to do so and in fact, met with two victims in separate meetings this week. The Archdiocese created a compassionate Victims Assistance Program which provides counseling for victims. The Victims Assistance Coordinators are professional social workers who listen to the wrenching stories victims tell of what has happened to them in the past and link victims with the services they need

All of these efforts were put in place several years ago. At this time, the Archdiocese is evaluating ways to strengthen these efforts with the help of outside professionals. And again, the Archdiocese supports strengthening laws to protect children. The goal of the Archdiocese is to offer compassionate care to those who suffered the horror of child sexual abuse, to educate the community about the prevalence of child sexual abuse and to put every possible protection into place so that no young person is ever put in jeopardy again.

Contact
Donna Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Host 50th Annual Cardinal's Christmas Party For Children

December 9, 2005

Cardinal Rigali to Host 50th Annual Cardinal's Christmas Party for Children

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will host the 50th annual Cardinal's Christmas Party for Children for approximately 400 children of different races, ages and religions. All the children who attend the party received services from agencies of Catholic Social Services this year. Catholic Social Services is the largest private, non-profit social service agency in Pennsylvania. The party begins with a colorful parade, followed by presents and entertainment.

Thursday, December 15, 2005
Wyndham Philadelphia Hotel
17th Street between Vine and Race Streets
Philadelphia


1:00 -- Cardinal Rigali will greet children in hotel lobby

2:15 p.m. -- Cardinal will greet high school volunteers in foyer of Grand Ballroom

2:30 p.m. -- Parade of marching bands, clowns and jugglers enters ballroom


Cardinal Rigali will speak to the children after the parade as will Reverend Monsignor Joseph Tracy, Secretary for Catholic Human Services. There will be a short play at 2:50 p.m. and Santa Claus will arrive at 3:00 p.m. to distribute gifts.

The Cardinal's Christmas Party for Children not only provides entertainment and presents for the children, it also raises funds to support programs of Catholic Social Services throughout the year. Catholic Social Services assists more than 143,000 children, adults and families throughout the five-county area of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia (Philadelphia, Bucks, Delaware, Chester and Montgomery Counties).

As in past years, the Wyndham Philadelphia Hotel will generously provide its services for this event. Mr. Daniel H. Polett, owner and president of Wilkie Chevrolet Buick Subaru, is the event chairperson for the twelfth year. Deacon John Hunter, president of J.E. Caldwell & Co. Jewelers, is the event coordinator. Hundreds of students from Catholic high schools throughout the Archdiocese will provide the entertainment.

###

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali's Christmas Message To The People Of The Archdiocese Of Philadelphia

December 20, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI'S CHRISTMAS MESSAGE TO THE PEOPLE OF THE ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA

Below is Cardinal Justin Rigali's Christmas Letter to be communicated to the people of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia on December 24th and 25th. Please feel free to quote from the letter or to print it in its entirety.

Christmas 2005

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I extend to you and your families my prayerful best wishes as we celebrate the birth of the Christ Child.

Mary, the Mother of our Savior, pondered the great events surrounding the birth of her Son. As the Gospel tells us: "Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart" [Lk 2:19]. It was with a heart, pure and holy and open to God's plan, that Mary pondered the great and wonderful things of God. She did so as a human being like ourselves, persevering in faith and trusting that the promises God made to her would be fulfilled. We remember how her cousin Elizabeth, filled with the Holy Spirit, cried out: "Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled" [Lk 1: 45].

As we ponder the birth of Jesus and its meaning for the life of the Church in Philadelphia and in our personal lives, Mary is an example for us of both faith and hope. She believed and, therefore, her heart was full of hope.

May our faith in the newborn Savior lead us this Christmas to experience new hope. Despite the problems of the world and the challenges of our lives, let us trust in Jesus. It is He who enables us to walk in the newness of life.

A blessed Christmas to you all!

Sincerely in Christ,

Cardinal Justin Rigali
Archbishop of Philadelphia

Contact
Meredith V. Wilson
Communications Specialist
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali Celebrates Christmas Liturgies Cathedral Basilica Of Saints Peter And Paul 18th Street And Benjamin Franklin Parkway Philadelphia

December 20, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI CELEBRATES CHRISTMAS LITURGIES
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia

Saturday, December 24, 2005 - Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, is the celebrant and homilist of all Masses
- 5:00 p.m. Christmas Vigil Mass
- 7:30 p.m. Christmas Vigil Mass Please note that the Archdiocesan Boy Choir will be singing carols at 7:00 p.m.
Christmas Midnight Mass
- Please note that beginning at 11:00 p.m. there will be a Prayer Service and Christmas Carols sung by the Archdiocesan Adult Choir.
- 12:00 a.m.- Music provided by the Cathedral Choir.

Editor's Note: Television cameras will not be permitted in the Cathedral. An audio and video mult-box feed will be provided in the parking lot of the Cathedral. Please enter on 17th Street, between Race and Vine Streets. Crews will need a bnc connector and a recording deck or a live truck. Reporters and still photographers will be permitted in the Cathedral. Television Crews please contact Father Daniel Kearns with any technical questions, 215-888-0305 (cell).

Sunday, December 25, 2005
- Other Masses on Christmas Day in the Cathedral: 8:00 a.m., 10:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m.
Media planning to cover any Masses at the Cathedral are asked to call the Cathedral Rectory at
215-561-1313 and leave a message for the rector, Monsignor Close.


Cardinal Rigali will be the celebrant and homilist for Christmas Mass at 11:00 a.m Saint Rose of Lima Parish, 1535 North 59th Street, West Philadelphia. If there are any questions please contact Saint Rose of Lima directly at 215-877-2991.


# # #

Contact
Donna M. Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Local Students From The Archdiocese Of Philadelphia Help Those In Need This Christmas Season

December 20, 2005

LOCAL STUDENTS FROM THE ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA
HELP THOSE IN NEED THIS CHRISTMAS SEASON

Parish elementary schools from around the Archdiocese of Philadelphia are helping those in need this holiday season. Students are hosting bake sales, adopting families, collecting gloves and mittens and gathering baby items for new mothers. Here is a sampling of the thoughtful ways that they are making a difference:

Saint Katharine of Siena - 239 Windermere Road, Wayne, Delaware County
- Students and Faculty had a bake sale. The proceeds went to making boxed items for our soldiers in Iraq.

Saint Ann - 418 Jefferson Avenue, Bristol, Bucks County
- A Baby Shower for Mary - Students are bringing in baby items that will be given to new mothers in a local shelter.

Saint Anslem - 12670 Dunks Ferry Road, Philadelphia County
- Merry Mittens Day - Students are collecting gloves and mittens to distribute to various institutions such as St. Vincent's Orphanage.

Saint Eleanor - 701 Locust Street, Collegeville, Montgomery County
- Students are raising money to be a home for a needy family in Jamaica. Their goal is $2,500.00

Saint Kevin - 200 West Sproul Road, Springfield, Delaware County
- The entire school body is collecting diapers for Mother's Home in Darby.
- The 4th graders are purchasing Christmas gifts for a needy family from Our Lady of Hope Parish in Philadelphia.

Editor's Note: To interview any of the principals or students involved please contact the Archdiocese of Philadelphia Communications Office at 215-587-3747.

# # #

Contact
Meredith V. Wilson
Communications Specialist
215-587-3747

Cardinal Rigali To Make Christmas Visit To Philadelphia Prison

December 21, 2005

CARDINAL RIGALI TO MAKE CHRISTMAS VISIT TO PHILADELPHIA PRISON

Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will visit Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility (CFCF) of the Philadelphia Prison System to celebrate Mass and spend time with inmates the day before Christmas Eve. CFCF is the largest of the Philadelphia Prison System facilities and serves as an intake center for adult men. The inmates of CFCF will participate in the liturgy by offering readings and singing. Media are welcome to cover the Mass and visit.

Friday, December 23, 2005
10:00 a.m. Mass
Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility Gymnasium
7901 State Road
Northeast Philadelphia,


After Cardinal Rigali greets the men of Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility, he will visit with the women of Riverside Correctional Facility (RCF) on the same grounds (approximately 11:30 a.m.).

Cardinal Rigali first made a pastoral visit to the Philadelphia Prison System during Christmas 2003, shortly after he was installed as Archbishop of Philadelphia when he celebrated a liturgy for the inmates of the Philadelphia Industrial Correctional Center, at that time the intake center for all women who are sent to jail in Philadelphia. That function was assumed by the Riverside Correctional Facility when it opened in 2004. Last Christmas, Cardinal Rigali visited the State Correctional Institution at Graterford in Montgomery County, where he celebrated Mass and visited with the men on death row.

Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility is the administrative center and largest of the Philadelphia Prison System facilities. It opened in 1995 and houses approximately 2,400 men; 260 of whom identify themselves as Catholic. CFCF serves as a 24 hour intake center for adult males, most of whom are awaiting trial.

Editor's Note: Media planning to cover are kindly asked to contact Mr. Bob Eskind, Public Information Officer for the Philadelphia Prison System at 215-685-7888. Not all inmates wish to be on camera. Prison staff will seat inmates who agree to be on camera in a designated area.

Contact
Donna M. Farrell
Director of Communications
215-587-3747

Statement From Cardinal Rigali On The Death Of Rosemont College President Ann Amore

December 22, 2005

STATEMENT FROM CARDINAL RIGALI
On the death of Rosemont College President Ann Amore

Rosemont College announced the death of President Ann M. Amore, Ph.D., on December 19, 2005. Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, issues the following statement concerning her death:

I was saddened to learn of the death of Dr. Amore. In her letter to the Rosemont community announcing that she was taking a leave of absence, Dr. Amore wrote that it was a joy and a privilege for her to serve as Rosemont's President since 2001. She conveyed that joy and was devoted to the faculty and students of the school. She will be missed by the Rosemont family and those involved with academic administration in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

From her roots in New York City, Dr. Amore joined a love for academics, specifically English literature, and dedication to community service. Her service reached a high point in her position as President of Rosemont College. The college is known for its commitment to excellence in education within the predominantly female student body whom Dr. Amore was proud to lead. Her memory will endure at Rosemont.

I offer my condolences to the family of Dr. Amore, in particular her father Edward, and brothers Edward Jr. and Glenn, and to the entire Rosemont College community. I pray that they may find comfort in our Lord Jesus, the Savior whose birth we prepare to celebrate and the One who gives us a share in eternal life.

Contact
Matthew Gambino
Associate Director, Office for Communications
215-587-3747

Santa And His Elves Are On Their Way To Needy Children The Archdiocese Of Philadelphia's 38th Annual Operation Santa Claus

December 22, 2005

SANTA AND HIS ELVES ARE ON THEIR WAY TO NEEDY CHILDREN
The Archdiocese of Philadelphia's 38th Annual Operation Santa Claus

170 teams consisting of four teenagers per team will spend Christmas Eve delivering toys to families in need throughout the Philadelphia area. The teen volunteers from Archdiocesan youth programs will dress as Santa and his elves and meet at St. Joseph's Preparatory School before delivering the toys.

Christmas Eve
Saturday, December 24, 2005
1:45 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.
Saint Joseph's Preparatory School
1733 West Girard Avenue
Philadelphia



Approximately 35,000 toys will be delivered to 10,000 needy children. The toys were collected from donation boxes at all branches of Beneficial Bank, Archdiocesan parishes and a number of Philadelphia businesses.

###


* SPECIAL EDITOR'S NOTE: Because of confidentiality, the media are asked NOT to accompany the teens to the homes of the families receiving toys. However, you may obtain footage of the teens gathering and preparing to make deliveries from St. Joseph's Preparatory School. Contact St. Joseph's Preparatory School on Christmas Eve: Dan Cellucci 610-613-7557.

Contact
Meredith V. Wilson
Communications Specialist
215-587-3747

Don Guanella School Visits Nationally Ranked Villanova Basketball Team

December 27, 2005

DON GUANELLA SCHOOL VISITS
NATIONALLY RANKED VILLANOVA BASKETBALL TEAM

The young men of Don Guanella School will visit Villanova University for a basketball clinic hosted by the nationally ranked Villanova men's varsity basketball team. This annual clinic has taken place since 1985. Don Guanella is a facility operated by Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in Springfield, Delaware County, for boys with a wide variety of disabilities ranging in age from five to 21.


Wednesday , December 28, 2005
Scrimmage from 10 to 12:00 p.m.
The Pavilion
Villanova University
Route 320
Villanova, Delaware County



Villanova coach Jay Wright, along with his players, will conduct a scrimmage and hold a private audience with the special needs students.

###





Editor's note: For more information, please contact Robert Neely, Activities Director at Don Guanella School at 610-543-1418, Ext. 309.

Contact
Bonnie Olinger
Communications Assistant
215-587-3747