evangelist header 2011
An E-Newsletter from the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown
August 2011
Volume III  Number  8
Welcome to the August edition of E-vangelist, a monthly E-Newsletter from the Communications Office of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown.  Summer is winding down, and that means it is time to start thinking "Back to School."  Our Education Office and Catholic schools are working hard in preparation for the new academic year. Prayerful best wishes to our students, parents, faculty and staff. Fall is always a busy time of year in our Diocesan Church, and this year is no exception. Upcoming events include the Catholic Life Conference Day of Reflection and the Wedding Anniversary Liturgies. Autumn will also be a time of preparation for the implementation of the newly-translated Roman MIssal. A series of workshops is planned in the coming weeks. You can read more about all of these upcoming events and more in this edition of E-vangelist. Blessings for a happy, safe and spiritual remainder of the summer.
In This Issue
Mass for College Students
Camp Zacchaeus
Bishop at Theology on Tap
Wedding Anniversary Masses
Roman Missal Workshops
Three Day Mission
School Choice Update
News and Notes


Ministry Quicklinks

Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown

Independent Catholic Foundation for the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown

Pennsylvania Catholic Conference

United States Conference of Catholic Bishops


the catholic register
Coming up in the August 1 edition of The Catholic Register:
  • Reporter Bruce Tomaselli looks ahead to the observance of the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks with an interview with two men who played key roles following the crash in Shanksville.




Bishop Mark Bartchak's upcoming Guests on Keeping the Faith, a weekly segment on Proclaim!: 



  • August 21 -- Teen Talk co-host Adam Wood interviews Bishop Mark about how young people can stay excited about their faith.
  • August 28  -- Marty Dombrowski, a teacher at Saint Rose of Lima School in Altoona, and Hayley Kelleher, a student at Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic High School in Altoona, look forward to the new school year with the Bishop.
  • September 4 --  Jared Arcuri, a 13-year old Liturgical musician, and his teacher, Evonne Yanzetich-Homway, talk about sharing time and talent with the Church.
  • September 11  -- On this anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks, Wally Miller and Jim Svonavec, members of Saint Peter Parish in Somerset, recall the tragedy in Shanksville and their roles in the aftermath.
  • September 18 -- Amy Hill, Communications Director of the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference, previews key issues facing state legislators as they return to Harrisburg after the summer recess.



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.




radio maria


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.


WFBG logo

Listen to the live Mass every Sunday morning at 10:00 a.m. from the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Altoona on WFBG 1290 AM.  



ACA 2011 logo    


Annual Catholic Appeal Update


So far, in the 2011 campaign, the Diocese has refunded $172,000 to 25 parishes that have exceeded their goals. All contributions returned to parishes are free from any assessments. Another 20 parishes will begin receiving refunds as pledges are fulfilled.  A parish-by-parish report through the end of July is available online by visiting www.ajdiocese.org and clicking on the ACA logo at right. To make your charitable gift, you can pick up an ACA envelope at the parish or make your gift now by clicking on the "Donate" button on our website. Thank you!


College Mass 2011Bishop Celebrates Mass for College Students 
Bishop Mark L. Bartchak celebrated a special outdoor Mass for students entering or returing to college and their families on August 7 at the Our Lady of the Alleghenies Shrine in Loretto. The Mass was sponsored by the Diocesan Office of Campus Ministry. The Bishop invited all college students in attendance to come to the Altar for a special blessing. After Mass, he presented the students with Rosary beads and enjoyed fellowship with the crowd.


"As your Bishop, and with the help and support of many others who organized this special Mass and social this evening, I want to assure you that in moving on to this amazing and awesome and challenging experience of college, you can count on our prayers and support," Bishop Mark said in his Homily. He advised  the young men and women to be daring, not to be afraid, and to keep their eyes on Jesus, and he encouraged them to turn to the Catholic Campus Ministry at their college for direction.


"And if for any reason that help isn't there, we are here to help, and you can count on me or the campus ministry team of our Diocese," he added. "Young people, especially those going off to college real soon, remember, you are the best. You are awesome. Not because I said it, but because that's how God has made you." [Photo: Bishop Mark offers a special blessing to dozens of college students gathered around the Altar.]

Camp Z 2011Camp Z a Big Success

Camp Zacchaeus, the annual Diocesan summer camp for students entering grades 4-9, was held the weeks of July 24 (session 1) and July 31 (session 2) at Camp Sequanota in Jennerstown. About 240 students participated. Camp Z includes daily Mass and prayer, and activities such as swimming, fishing and crafts. Bishop Mark L. Bartchak visited the campers at both sessions. He celebrated Mass, ate lunch, and fielded questions.  This year's theme was, "Uniquely Me, Created by God." [Photo: Bishop Mark greets campers during his visit to at Camp Zacchaeus on August 3.]



Theology on Tap State College 2011Bishop Discusses "The New Evangelization" at Theology on Tap

A standing-room-only crowd was on hand when Bishop Mark L. Bartchak spoke at a Theology on Tap session on August  1 in State College. Theology on Tap  is a speaker/discussion series for young adults. The sessions are usually held in a restaurant or tavern as a way of reaching young adults at the places where they gather.  Bishop Mark's topic was "The New Evangelization: Keeping the Faith and Practicing the Faith in Our Time." The New Evangelization, the Bishop said, is announcing or proclaiming the Gospel to someone who has heard it before or no longer keeps the faith. "A commitment must be made not to a re-evangelization but to a new evangelization -- new intensity, enthusiasm or passion, new in methods and new in expression," Bishop Mark added. After his presentation, the Bishop fielded questions from the crowd. 


marriageWedding Anniversary Masses
The Family Life Office will sponsor the annual Wedding Anniversary Liturgies on September 18, at 2:00 p.m., at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Altoona and on September 25, at 2:00 p.m., at Saint John Gualbert Cathedral in Johnstown. The Masses are open to couples celebrating their first, 25th, 40th, 50th, 55th or 60th+ anniversary this year. Bishop Mark L. Bartchak will be the celebrant and homilist for both Liturgies, and he will present participants with a special certificate. A reception for the couples and their families will follow each Mass. Couples must register at their parish before August 22. 

Roman MissalRoman Missal Workshops

The Diocesan Office of Liturgy, along with the Diocesan Liturgy Committee, will sponor five workshops in the fall on the implementation of the newly-translated Roman Missal. The workshops are open to all the Catholic Faithful, including those who were unable to attend in the spring. The following are the dates, times and locations of the workshops:

  • September 10 -- Saint John the Baptist, New Baltimore, Retreat and Conference Center
  • September 17 -- Saint John Gualbert Cathedral, Johnstown, Activity Center
  • September 24 -- Basilica of Saint Michael the Archangel, Loretto, School Hall
  • October 1 -- Our Lady of Victory, State Colege, Parish Activities Center
  • October 8 - Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, Altoona, Cathedral Hall.

The schedule for each workshop is as follows:


   9:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. -- Registration

   9:30 a.m. - Noon -- Presentation (With Break)

   Noon - 12:30 p.m. -- Discussion (Questions and Answers)

   12:30 p.m. -- Lunch


The cost per participant is $15.00. Please register with your parish office. Registrations are due ten days before the workshop.

Saint John NeumannMission in Honor of Saint John Neumann
A three-day mission honoring the 200th birthday of Saint John Neumann will be held September 19-21, at 7:00 p.m., at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Altoona. The Diocesan family is invited to participate. The presenter will be Father Richard Boever, C.Ss.R., professed a Redemptorist in 1968 and ordained to the Priesthood in 1973. Father Boever is the author of "Saint John Neumann, His Life and Spirituality." The following is the schedule for the mission:


  • September 19 -- Salvation in Jesus Christ
  • September 20 -- Repentance (Sacrament of Reconciliation available)
  • September 21 -- Called to Mission/Veneration of Relic of Saint John Neumann


Saint John Neumann, a Redemptorist, was fourth Bishop of Philadelphia. As Bishop, this Saint baptized, confirmed and offered Mass in several parishes in the Diocese of Altoona- Johnstown.

School Choice SignsSchool Choice Update

School Choice is expected to be a top priority for state legislators when they return from summer recess in September.  Supporters of school choice are urged to continue contacting their state senator and representative throughout the summer to voice their support for school choice.  For more information, please go to www.pacatholic.org.  


News and Notes


The Catholic Life Conference Day of Reflection will be held on Saturday, September 24, from 9:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., at Mount Aloysius College in Cresson. The theme is "Disciples of Christ; People of the Eucharist." For more information, or to register, please visit the Diocesan website at www.ajdiocese.org or contact Francine Swope at (814) 693-1401 or fswope@dioceseaj.org.



cathedral of the blessed sacramentThe Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Altoona will again offer tours throughout September. This magnificent structure was formally dedicated on September 7, 1931.  The dates for the one-hour tours are: September 4 at 1:00 p.m.; September 15 at 7:00 p.m.; September 22 at 7:00 p.m.; and September 25 at 1:00 p.m. If interested in participating in one of the tours, please call the Cathedral Parish Office at (814) 944-4603.



The Cathedreal of the Blessed Sacrament in Altoona is pleased to announce the arrival of Mr. Andrew R. Motyka, the new Director of Music Ministry.  Mr. Motyka received his undergraduate degree in music education from the College of  Saint Rose in Albany, New York. He received his Master of music in Sacred Music from the Catholic University of America. Mr. Motyka and his wife, Julie, are the proud parents of two young daughters.      



Our Lady of the Alleghenies ShrineAll are most welcome to join us each Sunday evening at 7:00 p.m. for an outdoor Sunday Mass at the Shrine of Our Lady of the Alleghenies in Loretto through Labor Day weekend, September 4, 2011. Please bring a lawn chair. In the event of inclement weather, the Mass will be held in the Basilica of Saint Michael the Archangel. The Prince Gallitzin Chapel House, adjacent to the Shrine, will also be open to the public on those same Sundays, beginning at 1:00 p.m. and closing at 6:00 p.m.


Upcoming Events 

September 5
Labor Day
Diocesan Offices Closed


September 18; 2:00 p.m.
Wedding Anniversary Liturgy
Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, Altoona


September 24
Catholic LIfe Conference Day of Reflection
Mount Aloysius College


September 25; 2:00 p.m.
Wedding Anniversary Liturgy
Saint John Gualbert Cathedral, Johnstown



Carmelite Community of the WordCarmelite Community of the Word
Anniversary Prayer

The Carmelite Community of the Word, a Diocesan order of Religious women, is celebrating the 40th anniversary of its founding and 10th anniversary of its institution of Diocesan Right.  
God of all genesis, God of every exodus, we stand in solidarity with your holy people throughout the ages, humbled and grateful for the 40th anniversary of foundation of the Carmelite Community of the Word and the 10th anniversary of establishment as an Institute of Diocesan Right. Your Word called us into being; Your Word continues to sustain us. May we be led by the spirit of Carmel to hear the Word in unassuming lives of contemplative prayer and apostolic service. May your reign of justice and peace be extended beyond our limited resources, beyond the boundaries of our lifetime. Accept our magnificat of praise and complete the good work you have begun in us. Through lives of prayer, penance and service, may we be evangelized and converted by the same Word we proclaim to others: Christ Jesus, 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