Catholic Transcript Magazine of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford Connecticut

As we celebrate the 175th Anniversary of the Archdiocese, we look back… on July 16, 1978 when the first Mass was held at St. Monica Church, Northford.
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Murasso FJ PIC 1 webFather Jeremiah Murasso, pastor of St. Pio of Pietrelcina Parish in East Haven, right celebrates Mass on television on Sept. 17. Father John Gatzak, director of the archdiocese's Office of Radio and Television, concelebrates.Father Jeremiah Murasso, pastor of St. Pio of Pietrelcina Parish in East Haven, right, celebrated a televised Mass on Sept. 17 at Our Lady of Pompeii Church with members of his new congregation to proclaim the merger of three former church families.

The Archdiocese of Hartford's pastoral planning initiative created the new parish in June from the congregations at three East Haven churches, St. Vincent de Paul, Our Lady of Pompeii and St. Clare. There are 2,800 families registered in the new parish, whose namesake is the mystic priest, “Padre Pio,” renowned for his piety, for being an extraordinary confessor and for suffering the stigmata, the wounds of Jesus.

Father Murasso asked the archdiocese's Office of Radio and Television to broadcast the Mass to help unify congregants from the three churches into one vibrant spiritual community.

Father Murasso said of the new parish, “We bring together, so beautifully, such a great wealth of talent, years of talent and volunteer service working very hard for the Church in East Haven. Now we've come together under one parish.”

Father John Gatzak, director of the Office of Radio and Television, concelebrated the Mass. He said parishes are invited to inquire about televising the celebration of the Mass from their communities.

“It’s a very special way to bring a parish together,” Father Gatzak noted, “and helps build a stronger sense of purpose and identity, especially for the recently merged parishes in the Archdiocese of Hartford.”

Pastors interested in hosting a televised Mass can contact Father Gatzak at the Office of Radio and Television.

The Celebration of the Eucharist is broadcast daily at 10 a.m. on WCCT television, channel 20 in Hartford, seen on most cable stations as channel 7 or 11 and streamed online at The Celebration of the Eucharist can also be heard every Sunday at noon on WJMJ, Catholic Radio in Connecticut, at 88.9 on the FM dial or online at

alertAt the Spring Assembly of the U.S. bishops, Cardinal Joseph Tobin suggested that a delegation ofbishops go to the border to see for themselves what was happening to newly arrived immigrants, families and children. On July 1 and 2, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, president of the U.S. bishops conference, and five other bishops conducted a pastoral visit to the diocese of Brownsville, Texas. Stops included Mass at the Shrine of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle with the community, a visit to anHHS/OBR Shelter and Mass for the families there, a visit to the Customs and Border Patrol processing center in McAllen, TX, and a press conference at the end of their visit. Catholic News Service accompanied the bishops on their border trip. 

  1. Backgrounder and analysis of the bishops’ trip to the border: Cardinal DiNardo told CNS, “You cannot look at immigration as an abstraction when you meet” the people behind the issue.
  2. At final press conference, Cardinal Daniel Dinardo said the church was willing to be part of any conversation to find humane solutions because even a policy of detaining families together in facilities caused “concern.”
  3. Bishops serve soup to immigrant families at a center run by Catholic Charities and listen to their stories. Scranton Bishop Joseph Bambera said he found hope in hearing the people in the room talk about what’s ahead. They didn’t speak of making money but of finding safety for their children, he said, driven by “the most basic instinct to protect your family.”
  4. At an opening Mass he Basilica of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle-National Shrine near McAllen, Texas, Bishop Daniel Flores of Brownsville told Massgoers, “The bishops are visiting here so they can stop and look and talk to people and understand, especially the suffering of many who are amongst us,”

A delegation of U.S. bishops goes on a fact-finding mission at the U.S.-Mexican border to learn more about Central American immigration detention.

Following their visit to an immigrant detention center, U.S. bishops said they are even more determined to call on Congress for comprehensive immigration reform.