An E-Newsletter from the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown
November 2010
Volume II  Number  11
CornucopiaA Time for Thanks and Prayer
Welcome to the November edition of E-vangelist, a monthly E-Newsletter from the Communications Office of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown. After another glorious fall in the Allegheny Mountains, we prepare for the colder days ahead, but also the warmth of this upcoming Thanksgiving season. Despite difficult times in our world and in our personal lives, we all have reason to give thanks. This Thanksgiving is a day of Prayer for the Harvest and Fruits of the Earth in our Diocese. Along with our wishes for a blessed Thanksgiving, we invite you and yours to pray the following prayer.


Father of the nations, your gifts are countless and your goodness infinite. On Thanksgiving Day, we come before You with gratitude for your kindness. Open our hearts to concern for our fellow men and women, so that we may share Your gifts of time and eternity in loving service. This prayer is made in the name of Jesus Christ who has given us the gift of redemption, for He is Lord for ever and ever. Amen.

In This Issue
Advent Resources
Certification Ceremony
Mass at Mission Church
Theology on Tap
Carroll Catholic Recognized
Vigil for Life
Ministry Quicklinks
Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown
Independent Catholic Foundation for the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown
Pennsylvania Catholic Conference
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

December guests on Bishop Joseph's Can We Talk? segment on Proclaim!:


  • December 5  --  Damian and Kelly Charlesworth of Saint Rose of Lima Parish in Altoona discuss the Christian Family Movement. 
  • December 12 --  The mothers of Father Brian Saylor and Father Allen Zeth talk about being parents of priests and the importance of encouraging vocations. 
  • December 19  --  Teen Talk co-host Adam Wood and Bishop Joseph talk about Christmas.  
  • December 26 --  Teen Talk co-host Adam Wood and Bishop Joseph look ahead to the Solemnity of Mary and New Year's resolutions. 

Proclaim! airs every Sunday at 5:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. on WWCP TV FOX 8. The live Mass from Saint John Gualbert Cathedral in Johnstown airs at 11:00 a.m. on WWCP and is rebroadcast at 9:00 p.m. on Atlantic Broadband Channel 9 in the Altoona area.

Coming up in the November
22 edition of The Catholic Register:

the catholic register
  • Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown announces a major fundraising initiative.
  • In his column, For the Good of the Household, Bishop Joseph explains why we should be thankful even when it appears that God is not answering our prayers.
  • In his Another Perspective column, Monsignor Tim Stein tells why he is thankful that God is in charge and he is not.
Bishop's Random Comments
francine swope 
Don't miss Bishop Joseph's blog Random Comments on the Diocesan website at www.ajdiocese.org.
Bishop Joseph writes about a variety of issues and invites readers to e-mail him questions and comments.
Radio Maria

francine swope
Listen to Radio Maria on WHHN 88.1 FM or go to the Diocesan website at www.ajdiocese.org and click on the Radio Maria button on the right.
Advent USCCB adO Come, O Come, Emmanuel

The season of Advent begins on November 27-28. Advent is a time of hopeful preparation for the birth of Jesus Christ. It is a time to prepare the way of the Lord and to make straight the path. All are encouraged to take advantage of this opportunity for spiritual growth leading up to the joyful Christmas season.

The following is a link to resources for the Advent and Christmas season, courtesy of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. The guide includes Advent devotions including the Advent wreath, the Advent calendar and Advent prayers. http://usccb.org/advent/

Other Advent Notes --

An Advent Day of Reflection will be held on December 4 from 9:00 a.m. until Noon, at the Incarnation Center in Gallitzin. Sister Linda LaMagna, CCW, will be the facilitator. Registration deadline: November 26. For more information, please visit the Diocesan website at www.ajdiocese.org or call the Diocesan Religious Education Office at (814) 693-1401.

The Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament Music Ministry will present its annual Advent of Christmas Concert on Sunday, December 19, at 7:30 p.m.  The concert is the second event in the inaugural season of the Cathedral's Concerts Under the Dome series. The Cathedral Festival Choir, Cathedral Youth Choir and St. Luke Episcopal Chancel Choir, joined by professional soloists and orchestra, will present Antonio Vivaldi's Magnificat as well as other classic music of the season.  Nicholas Will, Cathedral Music Director, and James Dengler, Organist and Choirmaster of St. Luke Episcopal, will conduct.  Admission is free and open to the public; a free-will offering will be accepted.    

Certification Ceremony 2010Certification Ceremony
Dozens of people received certification in Parish Life ministries during an Evening Prayer and Ceremony of Certification on November 2 at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Altoona. Bishop Joseph presided at the event. He reminded those being certified that their efforts are not in vain, and he encouraged them to continue the work of the Lord. The Bishop certified 29 people in Basic Lay Ecclesial Ministry, five people in Advanced Christian Initiation Team Ministry and nine people in Advanced Liturgical Foundations. He also recognized three catechists in the Religious Education Office for their years of service: Pauline Minor, 40 years; Lou Ann Hoffman, 30 years; and Jenny Borovicka, 25 years. [Photo: Bishop Joseph congratulates Samuel Albarano of Our Lady of the Alleghenies Parish in Lilly for his certification in Basic Lay Ecclesial Ministry. Looking on is Monsignor Robert Mazur, Director of the Diocesan Parish Life Office.]

The annual Senior High Youth Convention (SHYCON) was held on October 24 at Saint Francis University. The theme was "Following Jesus With Faith." SHYCON is open to students in grades 9-12. This year, 675 students attended from 31 parishes and the three independent Catholic high schools. The event included games and two keynote addresses from Mike Patin, a nationally-known youth ministry speaker.  The day ended with Mass celebrated by Bishop Joseph. [Photo: Students serve as Gift Bearers during Mass at SHYCON.]

Lois MorrisBishop Celebrates Mass at Mission Church
Bishop Joseph celebrated his annual Mass at Saint Joseph's Mission Church at Hart's Sleeping Place in Carrolltown on October 23. Built in 1830 and blessed by the Prince-Priest Demetrius Gallitzin, the church building is one of Cambria County's most notable historic landmarks. The original logs can be viewed at a window in the front, and stained glass windows depict historic scenes such as the defense of Gallitzin by John Weakland. Saint Joseph's Mission Church is open for weekend visitation in the summer, a handful of scheduled Masses throughout the year and weddings and funerals upon request.  [Photo: Lois Morris plays Prince Gallitzin's violin during Mass at Saint Joseph's Mission Church.] 

Theology on Tap Fall 2010Theology on Tap 

The fall Theology on Tap sessions in Altoona wrapped up this month. A four-week series was held between October 18-November 8 at Zach's Sports and Spirits. Theology on Tap is a casual speaker/discussion series for young adults (age 18-39). The sessions are held in restaurants/taverns as a way of reaching young people where they gather. The next Theology on Tap series is expected to be held in late winter or early  spring of 2011  in Cambria County. Bruce Tomaselli will have more on the recent Theology on Tap sessions and plans for a Young Adult Ministry in the Diocese in the November 22 edition of The Catholic Register. [Photo: Young adults listen to a presentation at a Theology on Tap session.]

Bishop Carroll Catholic High SchoolCarroll Catholic Recognized 
Bishop Carroll Catholic High School in Ebensburg has been listed among the top 50 Catholic secondary schools in the United States by the National Catholic High School Honor Roll. The Honor Roll is an independent project of the Acton Institute, an international research and educational organization, which ranks Catholic schools based on academic excellence, Catholic identity and civic education. Bishop Carroll Catholic High School will celebrate the honor during a Rededication Celebration in the gym -- which will include a blessing by Bishop Joseph -- on November 30.

Pro-Life RoseVigil for All Unborn Human Life 
Bishop Joseph has directed that the Vigil Mass on Saturday, November 27 -- the First Sunday of Advent --  be for the intention of all unborn life, and the Faithful should pray the Rosary either before Mass or after Mass for this intention. Pope Benedict XVI will celebrate a Vigil Mass for All Unborn Human Life on the same date and has requested that all Diocesan Bishops preside in a similar celebration. Bishop Joseph will celebrate the 5:00 p.m. Mass on November 27 at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Altoona.

News & Notes from Around the Household of God



OMOSOur Mother of Sorrows Parish in Johnstown marked its 90th anniversary with a Mass celebrated by Bishop Joseph on November 7. Very Rev. Mark Begly, V.F., Pastor of OMOS, and Monsignor Thomas Mabon, former Pastor of OMOS, concelebrated the Mass. A dinner was held following the Liturgy. The parish was founded in November 1920 and has only had five pastors over the 90-year span. To read Bishop Joseph's homily from the Mass, please go to the Diocesan website at www.ajdiocese.org.


saint john school bellefonteSaint John the Evangelist School in Bellefonte is celebrating its 120th anniversary this school year. The school opened in 1890 and was served by the Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary for 102 years. The oldest, continuously operating school in Center County, Saint John offers pre-K through fifth grade classes. In honor of the anniversary, the school is holding monthly community nights at restaurants and planning an alumni Mass.



bishop at saint roseBishop Joseph celebrated Mass for the students at Saint Rose of Lima School in Altoona on October 29. In his homily, the Bishop used small props to show the kids that sometimes things that do not appear to have immediate value actually do. A special  part of the Liturgy was the student body performing a Communion Meditation song in sign language.




proclaim!The 11:00 a.m. Christmas Day Mass at Saint John Gualbert Cathedral in Johnstown will once again be broadcast live on WWCP TV FOX 8. Bishop Joseph will be the celebrant. Thank you to WWCP TV for its support of our Proclaim! TV Ministry.


Upcoming Events 

November 20-21 (Christ the King)
Catholic Charities Special Collection

November 25-26
Thanksgiving Holiday
Diocesan Offices Closed

November 27-28
First Sunday of Advent

November 27
Vigil Mass for all Unborn Life
Parishes throughout the Diocese

December 4; 9:00 a.m.
Advent Day of Reflection
CCW Incarnation Center, Gallitzin

December 5; 3:00 p.m.

Altoona Area Christian Coalition Season of Hope Ecumenical Service
Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, Altoona

December 8
Immaculate Conception (Holy Day of Obligation)
Diocesan Offices Closed

December 24-27
Christmas Holiday
Diocesan Offices Closed

Advent wreathAdvent Prayer 

Father, in the wilderness of the Jordan, you sent a messenger to prepare people's hearts for the coming of your Son. Help me to hear His words and repent of my sins, so that I may clearly see the way to walk, the truth to speak, and the life to live for Him, our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
Contact Information
E-vangelist is published by the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown Office of Communications
Mr. Tony DeGol
Secretary for Communications
925 S. Logan Boulevard
Hollidaysburg, PA  16648
(814) 695-5579