Deacon John’s Stewardship Blog

Stewardship in Prayer

This week we hear from Anne and Stephen Kali who are lifelong parishioners at St. Patrick Parish who look forward to celebrating their 70th wedding anniversary in September.

For many years we as Roman Catholic Christians have relied on our parish priest and religious to help guide us and provide direction in our religious faith and beliefs. While acts of stewardship have always been part of our lives, the renewed emphasis on stewardship has many ways and forms of enactment. An example may be our recent St. Patrick Lenten fish frys. The joy and love of providing service was quite evident of one example of stewardship. Other examples may be assisting the poor; acts of kindness; educating and guiding our children; leading and setting Christian examples in our daily lives. At this point I would like to focus on another form of Stewardship and that is, stewardship in prayer that involves a personal matter. About three years ago my wife, Anne, following a routine medical examination was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer and her life’s long-term future looked dim. She immediately began to receive the available treatment for this condition. Due to the seriousness of Anne’s condition the cancer specialist and staff not just prescribed medication with specialized treatment but in their assertive and compassionate manner prescribed power of prayer. As one doctor said, “Pray a lot!” As family and friends learned of Anne’s condition, they too added their prescription of prayer. In the past year Anne’s condition has stabilized and the outlook for the future is positive with caution. The medical staff providing weekly care for Anne has used the term “miracle” for her present condition and now are including the power of prayer as part of her continued treatments. As reflected in Palm Sunday’s readings in Mark 14:1-15:47, the passion for prayer in times of distress certainly holds true in this case. As Anne’s husband, I offer my heartfelt thanks and gratitude for the many expressions of love and the prayer offerings for Anne’s well-being.
Thank you,
Stephen Kali

“The Lord can’t guide your footsteps until you move your feet!”

Hello! Our names are Bob and Jan Easton, Sr. We have been members of St. Patrick Parish since 2009, coming from St. Bernadette Church. We’ve been married for 47 years this coming October 23, 2018. Together, we have a son, Bob Jr.; a daughter-in-law, Mattie; and 2 beautiful grandchildren, Thomas (11 yrs. old) and Marisol (8 yrs. old). Our grandchildren keep us busy all year long with all their sports and activities. Thomas plays football and basketball and Marisol is in cheer leading, basketball and gymnastics. Well, enough of our grandparent bragging!

We decided to come to St. Pat’s 4:00 PM Mass on Saturday because Mass was at 6:30 PM at St. Bernadette’s. At St. Bernadette’s we attended Mass and came home, never getting actively involved. But the more we attended St. Pat’s, the more we were in awe of how the people were so friendly. Their smiles touched our hearts, especially during communion.

Soon the Men’s Christ Renews His Weekend was coming up and I was invited to attend. I was in no way rushed to say “YES”, but somehow the Lord kept on telling me to go. So, I attended the weekend retreat and the peace and spirit of the Lord filled my soul. It moved me so much that I wanted the same experience for Jan. She had all kind of excuses not to attend but finally said, “YES!” She also found the peace and love of Christ in her life.

This experience opened doors to many other ministries for us: Worship committee, Extraordinary Ministers and Christmas caroling with our youth to the home bound, Fish Fries, and parish festival. Jan also sings in the Folk choir and I am an altar server and serve at military funerals as well.

Living a life of stewardship has done so much for both of us. At St. Pat’s we don’t just come to Mass and go home. In fact, it seems that we are always the first ones to arrive and the last ones to leave! We have found out that not only do we have a parish where we serve, but also a church family where we can truly feel like we belong!

“The Lord can’t guide your footsteps until you move your feet!”
Love & Peace,
Bob & Jan Easton, Sr.

“It is all about your heart…

Stewardship is defined in the Bible as “Utilizing and managing all resources God provides for the glory of God and the betterment of his creation.” My name is Claire Gagliardi. I am 17 and a senior at Hubbard High School. I have been a part of St. Patrick’s for most of my life. I help manage and tidy up the St. Patrick’s school during CCD. I am also an altar server during Mass and I have just recently participated in Celebrate as a returning senior. Stewardship does not have to be seen by everyone and does not have to be some elaborate organized plan. You can practice Stewardship by simply being kind to someone. Making at least one person’s day a little brighter. Showing them how amazing life actually is and helping them realize that all of this is possible through God and his works. I plan to be a Steward to many more people in my life. I am going to keep striving to be able to be even just a little sliver of what He does for other people. I will leave you with a verse from Proverbs 11:25 “The generous will prosper. Those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed.”

Living a life of Stewardship. 
“It is all about your heart… 
everything we have is a gift from God 
that we are to use to help others.”

“Come follow me…”

Hello! My name is Ida Leonelli. Many may know me from teaching  CCD at St. Pat’s. Living a life of stewardship has had a positive effect  on me. I joined St. Patrick Church in 1972. Through my working years I was employed at Loblaws and Giant Eagle until I retired from the grocery business in 1986. When I retired, I called Sr. Delores to see where I could volunteer at the church. She invited me to help with the RCIA program. This experience opened the door to many new friendships and many opportunities to learn more about Scripture and the history of the Catholic Church. At that time, some of my classes were even taught by our very own pastor today, Fr. Mike Swierz. I also volunteered at Vacation Bible School in the summer and had a lot of fun with the youth of all our churches here in Hubbard. Then Sr. Kathleen encouraged me to teach second grade CCD. I loved it so much that I continued to teach for thirty-one years. I received the Pius X Award for teaching and was also awarded as a National Honorary Catechist through Catechist Magazine. I am very grateful and honored for these awards. Through the years my faith continued to grow as I participated in the Christ Renews His Parish Ministry. I have also served as a Eucharistic Minister, in Children’s Liturgy of the Word, Generations of Faith, Altar and Rosary Society, and the Festival Committee. I felt like Jesus was telling me, “Come, follow me…I am not through with you yet!” I also have enjoyed Fr. George Balasko’s classes and reading my Bible. I love Scripture so much it is like living in the moment of Jesus’ life. At my age, I am  still learning something new. My sister, JoAnn and I belong to the Sewing and Craft Center at St. Pat’s and the Senior Citizens Club that meets once a month. These activities are great times for both of us in our upper years. All the deacons have also helped me so much in my life too. I have learned that through a stewardship way of life, you are never too old to grow in love and service to our Lord, Jesus Christ.
God Bless you!