From the Pastor, Feb 7

My Dear People,

         THIS Sunday only, February 7, I ask your patience as we once again invite folks in the Community to respond to the IN-PEW Appeal for Catholic Charities here in our Diocese.    (Next Saturday at the 4:30 Mass)

         Even if you have already responded to the 2016 Appeal, please take an envelope from an usher to indicate on the envelope that you already responded.

         Last week’s bulletin provided an insert highlighting the areas in the 8 counties where your Catholic Charities will help those in need.

         St. Bernard Parish is asked to support this Annual Appeal by contributing $44,997. Please be generous. Give as you are able. And – whatever you can do – let LOVE power your giving; do it for Love.

         Again, I thank you for your part in this Diocesan-wide effort.      Blessings, Fr. Dan

From the Pastor, Jan 24

Dear People of St. Bernard,

In 2016 we begin an all-out-effort to restore and expand our 110-year-old church organ. The last major restoration was 60 years ago. The organ console was replaced and the control mechanism that opened the air ducts to the pipes went from a pneumatic system to an electric system.

Last week we published this article. And, almost on cue, one of the organ pipes gave out at the end of the 4:30 Mass. That was that squealing noise you all heard. People have come by this week to “Dedicate an Organ Pipe” in the name of a loved one. As you can see from our display at the church front entrance, we are only a third of the way to our goal. We have plenty of pipes to dedicate. Our current organ has only 28 ranks of pipes. The renovated organ will have 42 ranks and trumpets. It’ll be an incredible sound!

As I’ve mentioned in the past, the reason for this fund is simple: outside of routine maintenance, very little has been done to correct pipes that no longer speak. Our organist, Jim Kintz, has mysteriously worked around all the defects in our organ without us noticing.

We will replace the current console, the wind chest reservoirs, and also refurbish some of the existing pipes, replacing other pipes, and adding many more pipes to expand the instrument tonally. There will be a total of 2,481 newly restored pipes speaking on our church organ.

We were successful in razing the school and expanding our parking lot, I believe WE CAN DO THIS!! Here’s how:

1) ROOTED IN FAITH – FORWARD IN HOPEWe ask all who pledged to this Diocesan Campaign in 2012 to continue to honor your commitment. Seventy percent of your honored pledge now comes back to the parish. Those quarterly checks can be applied to our Church Organ Fund.

2) ORGAN PIPE DEDICATION We ask you, your relatives, and friends to consider leaving a legacy. The restored church organ will be able to support future generations for at least 75 more years (2090).

            People have paid to have their name on a brick. People have paid to have a star in the heavens named after them. We are asking people to consider purchasing an organ pipe on the St. Bernard Church Organ. Believing we can accomplish this task to enhance our worship of God, we ask people to consider dedicating or naming a pipe for someone at the cost of $100.00 for each pipe named. Names will be inscribed in a Leather-bound Registry when our financial goal is reached. Or, for the purchase of a rank of 61 pipes for $6,000.00 whereby a memorial plaque will be affixed to the restored church organ  

Doing the math, you can see our hope is to raise $248,100.00. This amount added to funds already donated to date ($127,984.) will bring us to the projected cost of full restoration.

3) OTHER FUND RAISING EVENTS We ask your continued support to the effort of individuals to help us reach our goal. We are grateful to people like, Clarence Bechter, who has gone to great heights (climbing mountains) for this fund. Please continue your support to these charitable drives.

4) GRANTS and ORGANIZATIONS We are looking for people who are seeking us. There must be people in the Arts and Music, in Sacred Music and Organ Instruments, or support Historical Places who would consider our efforts in line with their mission. If you have recommendations we will consider them.

For the Glory of God, Fr. Dan

From the Pastor

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As pastor of two parishes, I recently met with the pastoral and finance councils for both St. Mary and St. Bernard together.  I gave to them a proposal to decrease the number of weekend Masses.  Along with Fr. Frank, I gave the councilors reasoning for this change based on clergy trends for the diocese, average Mass attendance, the seating capacity of these buildings, and the fact that the households in both parishes are small in size and drive a distance to attend.

I appreciate the input from the councils that will help me to make a decision and eventually decide when the new schedule will be implemented.  A new schedule would allow people to still go to the church where they “feel” at home but likely at a new time.

We closed the meeting recommending we pray over the matter.  I ask you to please keep this matter in your prayer intentions as well.

Thanks to those who helped to dismantle the Christmas decorations for this year.

Consider the opportunity to attend the Mass for Life at the Cathedral this FRIDAY at 10am.  Also there will be a prayer service at St. Bernard for those who cannot make it at 10:00am.

God bless you, Fr. Dan

The following changes will take effect in 2016: 

1)   On Federal Holidays (except Christmas): Dr. King Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, and Thanksgiving Day – Mass will be celebrated only at St. Bernard for both parishes.  Time to be determined, but likely 9:30am.  Then in 2017, holidays can be held in St. Mary for that year.

2)    On Holy Days of Obligation (except Christmas):  There will no longer be a Vigil Mass scheduled for January 1, August 15, November 1, and December 8th.  Masses on a Holy Day of Obligation for both parishes will be Midday at St. Bernard, and, an evening Mass at St. Mary.  Times to be announced.

 

Blessed Sacrament Chapel

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THE BLESSED SACRAMENT CHAPELI’m traditional when it comes to Perpetual Adoration. I believe it should be done in a monastery or convent where people are present 24 hours a day and seven days a week. And it should not be in just any religious convent, but one where Eucharistic Devotion is part of the spirituality of that religious congregation.

            So why here in a parish community? First, we are not having Perpetual Adoration. The Blessed Sacrament is reserved in the chapel at specific times and on specific days: Monday through Friday, 9am – 5pm.

            The former convent chapel has been restored. Thanks to an anonymous donor the entire renovation, including the installation of a new restroom, has been paid for by an individual. Also, this individual gave the funds for the installation of a security camera in the chapel and a key-coded access lock for the entryway.

            The number of people who take advantage of this quiet time of prayer with the Lord is not large enough to heat our huge church all day. This convent space provides a more intimate and conducive atmosphere for prayer – as well as being economical – whether in winter or in summer with air conditioning.

            Then there are the symbolic and logistical reasons. There are other parishes that have Exposition and Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, but they are a distance away. Here we are in the heart of Akron. What a wonderful location to have a chapel specifically for prayer before our Lord. As St. Bernard church is in the heart of Akron, the Lord is in the heart of it all.

            Finally, as I said the place of Perpetual Adoration should be in a place where there are people present to pray. How are we going to find the people to come downtown to pray? For some time in my own prayer, I resisted this idea. Who’s going to come? Not many come now to the tabernacle in the church to pray. Who’s going to come for this? People just aren’t ready for Eucharistic Adoration! But, then I heard the Lord say to me, “But, Daniel, I am ready for it!”

            So, the main reason for this chapel is to say, the Lord Jesus is ready and waiting for you. He is present in His Body and Blood, His Soul and Divinity for you. In this Advent Season when we focus on waiting and anticipation, let us not forget that Jesus Christ is waiting in anticipation for your presence, your prayer, your love and devotion. At Christmas we celebrate His birth, come let us adore Him. Throughout the new year, let us always remember that He is here and with us until the end of time in the Eucharist.