evangelist header 2011
An E-Newsletter from the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown
April 2011
Volume III  Number  4
Bartchak headshotWelcome Bishop Mark!
Welcome to the April edition of E-vangelist, a monthly E-Newsletter from the Communications Office of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown.  What a week for our Diocesan Church! The Most Rev. Mark L. Bartchak was ordained a Bishop and installed as the eighth Shepherd of Altoona-Johnstown. What a glorious and memorable Mass at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Altoona. It was a time of unity for the clergy and the Faithful as we look to the future of our Diocesan Church. Bishop Bartchak's episcopal motto is "Christ our Hope of Glory." Our hope was, indeed, renewed through the festivities of this week. Our focus now turns to the Sacred Triduum and Easter. May our observance of the upcoming days lead us to the true joy of the resurrection of Christ -- our Hope of Glory! 
In This Issue
Rite of Election
March 25 Not Day of Abstinence
Junior High Youth Day
Tri-High Day
Night for Vocations
Chances for Charity
School Choice Update
Ministry Quicklinks
Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown
Independent Catholic Foundation for the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown
Pennsylvania Catholic Conference
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

Upcoming guests on the
Can We Talk? segment on Proclaim!:




  • April 24  --  On this Easter Sunday, Bishop Joseph introduces the newly-ordained Bishop Mark L. Bartchak to viewers, and the two Bishops share Easter blessings.


  • May 1 -- Bishop Joseph continues his interview with the newly-ordained Bishop Bartchak. Today, Bishop Joseph asks Bishop Bartchak his feelings on key issues facing the Diocese.


  • May 8 -- On this Mother's Day, Teen Talk co-hosts Samantha Slezak and Adam Wood interview Bishop Joseph about the importance of motherhood. The teens also ask Bishop Joseph to give a parting message to teens.


  • May 15 -- Bishop Bartchak joins the Teen Talk co-hosts and offers his vision for reaching out to young people in the Diocese.



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 April  25 edition of The Catholic Register:

the catholic register
  • Complete coverage of the Ordination of Bishop Mark L. Bartchak and his Installation as Eighth Bishop of Altoona-Johnstown.



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.




francine swope
Bartchak blessingNew Bishop Ordained and Installed
A new era for the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown began on April 19, when Monsignor Mark L. Bartchak, of the Diocese of Erie, was ordained a Bishop and installed as the eighth Bishop of Altoona-Johnstown. More than 1,100 people packed the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Altoona to witness the historic event. Cardinal Justin Rigali, Metropolitan Archbishop of Philadelphia, Bishop Joseph and Bishop Donald Trautman of the Diocese of Erie were the co-consecrators. Archbishop Pietro Sambi, Apostolic Nuncio to the United States of America, was in attendance, along with almost two dozen other Bishops from Pennsylvania and Ohio and local Ecumenical leaders. Bishop Bartchak's mother and seven siblings were also on hand. Representatives from various segments of the community formally greeted the new Bishop after he was seated in his Cathedra. At the end of the Mass, Bishop Bartchak delivered his first Pontifical Blessing and addressed the crowd. He thanked everyone for their prayers and support and pledged to do his best to reach out to the clergy and the Faithful. On the evening before the ordination, an Evening Prayer Service was held at the Cathedral. At that time, the Bishop-Elect made his Profession of Faith and took his Oath of Fidelity. Bishop Joseph blessed the new Bishop's Episcopal Ring, a gift from the clergy of the Diocese, and his Pectoral Cross, a gift from the Bartchak family. For complete coverage of the ordination and installation, please see the April 25 edition of The Catholic Register. [Photo: Bishop Mark L. Bartchak offers his Pontifical Blessing to the Faithful at his ordination and installation. Joining the new Bishop are Bishop Joseph (left) and Bishop Donald Trautman of Erie.]

Bartchak Coat of ArmsBishop's Triduum/Easter Schedule

Bishop Bartchak will have a very busy first several days in office. The following is the Pontifical Schedule for Triduum and Easter:

  • Holy Thursday -- Chrism Mass at 11:00 a.m., at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament; Mass of the Lord's Supper at 7:30 p.m., at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament.
  • Good Friday -- Morning Prayer at 9:00 a.m., at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament; Celebration of the Lord's Passion at Noon, at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament; and Tenebrae at 7:30 p.m., at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament.
  • Holy Saturday -- Office of Readings at 9:00 a.m., at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament; Easter Vigil at 8:30 p.m., at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament.
  • Easter Sunday -- Mass of the Lord's Resurrection at 11:00 a.m., at Saint John Gualbert Cathedral. Bishop Bartchak will also take Canonical Possession of the Cathedral in Johnstown (Mass broadcast live on WWCP TV FOX 8 until 12:30; Thank you to FOX 8 for making the extra time available).
LilyBishop Bartchak's Easter Message
Bishop Bartchak released an Easter message for the Faithful. The following is an excerpt.
When I was a child, there were a number of activities that helped us to continue to celebrate at home what we had already celebrated in church at the Easter vigil liturgy the night before. One of my favorites was the Easter egg and Easter candy hunt at my grandparents' home. My grandfather was quite clever at hiding them well enough to make it challenging and exciting. Sometimes when we thought that we had found everything, he would ask us if we found what we were looking for? We would look at each other with a puzzled stare and then began to ask each other what could we have missed.
To read the Bishop's full Easter message, please visit the Diocesan website at www.ajdiocese.org.
Holy SpiritConfirmation Season
Confirmation season in the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown begins on April 27. Bishop Bartchak will confirm about 1,100 students during 17 Masses between that date and Pentecost Sunday. For a schedule of Confirmations, please go to the Diocesan website at www.ajdiocese.org.

Prince Gallitzin CrossPrince Gallitzin Cross Award
The Diocese is once again accepting nominations for the annual Prince Gallitzin Cross Award. The award is given to individuals who exhibit the  "evangelizing spirit of the Prince-Priest Demetrius Gallitzin. This year's Gallitzin Cross awards banquet will be held on June 4, at 5:00 p.m., at the Cosgrave Center at Mount Aloysius College in Cresson.  A nomination form and the criteria for the award are available on the Diocesan website at www.ajdiocese.org. Nominations are due by April 28. The deadline to purchase tickets is May 20.

Bishop's Night for Vocations

The annual Bishop's Night for Vocations will be held on May 11 at Our Lady of Loretto Community Hall in Loretto (next to the Basilica of Saint Michael the Archangel). The event will begin with a reception at 5:30 p.m. followed by dinner at 6:30 p.m. Sponsored by the Serra Clubs of Altoona and Cambria County and the Diocesan Vocation Office, the evening will be hosted by Bishop Bartchak. The featured speaker will be Father Kim Schreck of the Diocese of Pittsburgh.  Prizes will be awarded that night to winners of the essay, poetry and poster contests, sponsored by the Vocations Office.  Tickets are $25 and can be purchased from any Serran  or by contacting the Vocations Office at (814) 472-5441. The deadline to purchase tickets is April 22.  


Chances for Charity group shotCatholic Charities Fundraiser
"Chances for Charity," a regional  fundraising initiative of Catholic Charities, is in full swing.  The effort involves the sale of raffle tickets at $50 each. Participants will be eligible to win nine cash prizes -- including the top prize of $5,000 -- and 91 other prizes valued at $50 or more. The non-cash prizes include gift cards for various area businesses and restaurants. Tickets are available at parishes throughout the Diocese or by calling the Altoona office of Catholic Charities at (814) 944-9388. The drawing will be held at the Catholic Charities annual recognition dinner on May 5. For a complete list of prizes, please go to the Diocesan website at www.ajdiocese.org. [Photo: (front row left to right) Catholic Charities board members Geraldine Pontzer and Michele DeFrancisco; (back row left to right) C. David Kimmel, board member and Chances for Charity co-chair; Jean Johnstone, Executive Director of Catholic Charities; and Chris Edwards, board member and Chances for Charity co-chair.]
School Choice Update
Senate Bill 1 will help thousands of children attend the school of their choice with increased Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) scholarships and vouchers for qualified families in certain areas. The Advocates for Catholic Education in Pennsylvania, or ACE-PA, is an extensive network of concerned parents, educators, alumni, parishioners and taxpayers who will speak with one loud voice in favor of school choice. Sign up at www.pacatholic.org/ace-pa and learn more about what you can do to help pass Senate Bill 1 and make a brighter future for the children of Pennsylvania. For more information about Senate Bill 1, you can also go to the Diocesan website at www.ajdiocese.org.

News and Notes


Starting on April 28, there will be a change in the scheduling of the Thursday Prayer for Vocations to the Priesthood and Religious Life at the Prince Gallitzin Chapel House in Loretto. Eucharistic Adoration will begin every Thursday at 4:00 p.m. until Benediction at 6:50 p.m. A Rosary for Vocations is recited every Thursday at 6:00 p.m. A Mass for Vocations is celebrated every thursday at 7:00 p.m. The Outdoor Shrine Mass will be celebrated Sunday evenings at 7:00 p.m. from Memorial Day to Labor Day. 



cathedral of the blessed sacramentOn May 1, at 7:30 p.m., the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Altoona will present the final event of the inaugural season of Concerts Under the Dome -- an evening of music for brass and organ performed by C Street Brass and organist Donald Sutherland. C Street Brass is a quintet of musicians studying at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore, Maryland, and is fast becoming one of the best-known brass ensembles in the Baltimore-Washington metro area. They are joined for this concert by Donald Sutherland, Coordinator of the Organ Department at Peabody, who will play the Cathedral's historic 1931 Steinmeyer organ. A free-will offering will be accepted at the doors.


DVD copies of the Ordination and Installation of Bishop Mark L. Bartchak are available through WJAC TV. The cost of each DVD is $21.20, including sales tax. WJAC is donating profits from the sale of the DVDs to the Johnstown office of Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown. Please send a check or money order to WJAC TV, 49 Old Hickory Lane, Johnstown, PA  15905. For more information, call (814) 255-7600.


Upcoming Events 

April 21 (Holy Thursday); 11:00 a.m.

Chrism Mass

Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, Altoona


April 24 (Easter Sunday); 11:00 a.m. 

Bishop Bartchak celebrates Mass at Saint John Gualbert Cathedral and takes Canonical Possession of the Cathedral


April 30; 5:00 p.m.

Neophyte Mass of Thanksgiving
Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament


May 1; 7:30 p.m.
Concerts Under the Dome
Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, Altoona 


May 5; 5:00 p.m. Catholic Charities Annual Recognition Dinner

UVA Club, Altoona


May 11; 5:30 p.m.

Bishop's Night for Vocations
Our Lady of Loretto Hall, Loretto


May 25; 7:00 p.m.

Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic High School Graduation
Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, Altoona


May 26; 6:00 p.m.

Bishop Carroll Catholic High School Graduation

Holy Name Parish, Ebensburg


May 27; 7:00 p.m.

Bishop McCort Catholic High School Graduation

Saint Benedict Parish, Johnstown


May 30

Memorial Day

Diocesan Offices Closed




cross of lilly and thornsRegina Coeli (Prayer during the Easter Season)
O Queen of heaven, rejoice! Alleluia.
For He whom you did merit to bear, Alleluia.
Has risen as He said, Alleluia.
Pray for us to God, Alleluia.
   V. Rejoice and be glad, O Virgin Mary. Alleluia.
   R. For the Lord has risen indeed. Alleluia.

Let us pray. O God, Who by the resurrection of Your Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, has given joy to the whole world, grant, we beseech You, that through the intercession of the Virgin Mary, His Mother, we may attain the same joys of eternal life. Through the same Christ Our Lord. 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