Welcome to Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Bristol, Rhode Island. Although our Church was founded for and by the Italian Catholics of Bristol, Rhode Island in 1917, who began a feast in honor of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in 1899, our parishioners now are of many heritages, many finding their family roots immersed in Italian culture. Our Pastor, the Very Reverend Henry P Zinno Jr. and our Assistant Pastor, the Reverend Stephen Dandeneau, welcome all to visit our website, visit our Parish in person, and to attend Holy Mass.
Upon walking into the foyer of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Bristol, Rhode Island, there is of course a statue of Our Lady holding Baby Jesus.
As you look upon our Savior, your eyes immediately are brought up to the angels adorning the stained glass window above the Crucifix. This is but one of the many intricately designed stained glass windows that proudly enhance the beauty of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church.
If you were to visually tour the Church from this point in a clockwise direction, you would behold many statues and burning candles in our statue room as well as an outstanding array of stained glass windows. Between these lovely windows are the plaques depicting the Stations of the Cross. (*Acknowledgments are noted at the very end of the tour.)
To the right of the main entrance of our Church, in the Cry room, is a brand new Stained Glass Window in honor of Blessed Pier GIorgio Frassati. Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati is a saint for the modern world, and especially for the young people of our time. Born in 1901 in Turin, Italy, his time on earth was short-only 24 years-but he filled it passionately with holy living. Pier Giorgio was a model of virtue, a “man of the beatitudes,” as Pope John Paul II called him at the saint’s beatification ceremony in Rome on May 20, 1990 From the earliest age, and despite two unreligious parents who misunderstood and disapproved of his piety and intense interest in Catholicism, Pier Giorgio placed Christ first in all that he did. These parental misunderstandings, which were very painful to him, persisted until the day of his sudden death of polio. However, he bore this treatment patiently, silently, and with great love.
Pier Giorgio was handsome, vibrant, and natural. These attractive characteristics drew people to him. He had many good friends and he shared his faith with them with ease and openness. He engaged himself in many different apostolates. Pier Giorgio also loved sports. He was an avid outdoorsman and loved hiking, riding horses, skiing, and mountain climbing. He was never one to pass on playing a practical joke, either. He relished laughter and good humor. Pier Giorgio prayed daily, offering, among other prayers, a daily rosary on his knees by his bedside. Often his agnostic father would find him asleep in this position. “He gave his whole self, both in prayer and in action, in service to Christ. Most notably, however, Pier Giorgio (like the Dominican St. Martin de Porres) lived his faith through his constant, humble, mostly hidden service to the poorest of Turin. Although Pier Giorgio grew up in a privileged environment, he never lorded over anyone the wealth and prestige of his family. Instead, he lived simply and gave away food, money, or anything that anyone asked of him. It is suspected that he contracted from the very people to whom he was ministering in the slums the polio that would kill him.
Even as Pier Giorgio lay dying, his final week of rapid physical deterioration was an exercise in heroic virtue. His attention was turned outward toward the needs of others and he never drew attention to his anguish, especially since his own grandmother was dying at the same time he was. Pier Giorgio’s heart was surrendered completely to God’s will for him. His last concern was for the poor. On the eve of his death, with a paralyzed hand, he scribbled a message to a friend, reminding the friend not to forget the injections for Converso, a poor man Pier Giorgio had been assisting.
When news of Pier Giorgio’s death on July 4, 1925 reached the neighborhood and city, the Frassati parents, who had no idea about the generous self-donation of their young son, were astonished by the sight of thousands of people crowded outside their mansion on the day of their son’s funeral Mass and burial. The poor, the lonely, and those who had been touched by Pier Giorgio’s love and faithful example had come to pay homage to this luminous model of Christian living.
Pier Giorgio’s mortal remains were found incorrupt in 1981 and were transferred from the family tomb in the cemetery of Pollone to the Cathedral of Turin. He was beatified on 20 May 1990. Pray for his canonization!
Holy Week windows, Oct. 23, 2008
Some of the statues we display are..
St. Anthony holding Baby Jesus
Feast Day: June 13
Roman Catholic Priest and Doctor of the Church
St. Anthony of Padua is one of the most famous disciples of St. Francis of Assisi. He was a famous preacher with great charisma impressed upon by the Holy Spirit. When he spoke, sinners would fall to their knees. Saint Anthony was a worker of miracles in his own day. He is associated with the return of lost objects. He is also the patron of Portugal, travelers, shipwrecks, barren women, infertility, spinsters, harvests, starving and the poor. The lily he carries symbolizes purity, innocence and integrity and has been associated with the Virgin Mary and other virgin saints. Holding the baby Jesus symbolizes his empowerment of honor and trust.
Feast Day: December 13
Patron Saint of Blindness/Eye Diseases
St. Lucy was renowned for her dazzling eyes, which she once plucked out herself and sent to a lustful suitor on a platter in an attempt to convert him. She succeeded and legend has it that her eyes grew back more beautiful than before. Outraged because Lucy gave her family’s fortune to charity, her fiancée betrayed her as a Christian to the authorities. They tried unsuccessfully to deflower her in a whorehouse and burn her at the stake. In the end, she was killed with a sword through the neck. St. Lucy is also the patron of gondoliers, glaziers, lamplighters, writers, salespersons and peddlers. People call upon her in prayer for dysentery, eye-disease, hemorrhage and throat disease.
St. Francis of Assisi
Feast Day: October 4
Patron Saint of Animals
Saint Francis, born in Assisi, Italy in 1182, lived and preached a life of poverty and love of God to all men. The official Franciscan garb worn by St. Francis was a gardener’s cloak given to him when he was in need of clothing by the Bishop of Assisi. He traveled and preached against extravagance and performed a variety of miracles; such as, walking through fire, taming wild animals and preaching to birds, who then flew and spread his message to the four corners of the world. He founded the Franciscan order, encouraging the friars to always take the last and lowest place. Anyone wishing to join the order was asked to give up all their worldly possessions and live a life of absolute poverty and abstention. Francis was the first person ever to receive the stigmata, the five wounds of Christ, which he suffered from for the rest of his life. He died in the company of his good friend St. Clare (with whom he founded the Order of the Poor Clares and the Third Order for lay people). Despite his request for a pauper’s grave, he was buried in a lavish basilica. St. Francis is also the patron of Italy, catholic action and tapestry makers.
Prayer to St. Francis of Assisi
O God, who, through the merits of blessed Francis, didst give increase to Thy Church, by enriching her with new offspring grant us, that following his example we may despise earthly goods and ever rejoice in partaking of Thy heavenly gifts. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who lives and reigns with You and Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
St. Therese of the Little Flower (St. Therese of Lisieux)
Feast Day: October 1
Patron Saint of florists, France, Russia, pilots and foreign missions (because of her dream to travel to Indochina, which was aborted because of ill health); and she’s invoked against tuberculosis.
French born, at the age of 15, Therese entered the Carmelite convent convinced she was called by God. She lived a life of simplicity and humility, total love and complete acceptance of God’s will. She was always performing little acts of kindness and love. She carried the whole world in her heart, always using Prayer and sacrifice. Her stubbornness and strong willpower were her assets in overcoming her faults and enabling her to grow in holiness. Even when stricken with a terminal illness, she never wasted time while suffering. Her autobiography, The Story of a Soul, became a best seller and she inspired many with her “little way” of finding perfection in everyday things. Usually depicted with a bouquet, she once stated that after her death, “I shall let fall a bouquet of roses”. She died at the age of 24 and was canonized in less than 30 years after her death, which is faster than any other saint since 1588. Currently the Vatican Council II is reviewing the lives of her parents for canonization.
Prayer to Saint Therese
O little St. Theresa of the Child Jesus, who during your short life on earth became a mirror of angelic purity, of love strong as death, and of wholehearted abandonment to God, now that you rejoice in the reward of your virtues, cast a glance of pity on me as I leave all things in your hands. Make my troubles your own – speak a word for me to our Lady Immaculate, whose flower of special love you were – to that Queen of heaven “who smiled on you at the dawn of life.” Beg her as the Queen of the heart of Jesus to obtain for me by her powerful intercession, the grace I yearn for so ardently at this moment, and that she join with it a blessing that may strengthen me during life. Defend me at the hour of death, and lead me straight on to a happy eternity. Amen
St. Michael the Archangel
Feast Day: September 29
One of the Seven Angels who stand before the throne of God
St. Michael is the leader of the heavenly armies in their battle against the forces of hell and in rebuking the devil.
Prayer To Saint Michael The Archangel
St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the devil; may God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do thou O Prince of the heavenly hosts, by the divine power, thrust into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.
Continuing on from our statue room…
You begin your tour and viewing of the stained glass windows. Guido Nincheri and/or the Nincheri Studio in Montreal, Canada created all of the stained glass windows located within Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church circa 1967. Mr. Nincheri, a master of stained glass, was born in Prato, Italy. He studied painting, drawing and architecture at the Academy of Fine Arts in Florence. In 1914 Mr. Nincheri and his wife immigrated to Montreal. Guido Nincheri’s work graces the wall and windows of more than 200 buildings spanning nine Canadian provinces and seven U.S. states. Nincheri devoted most of his career to the making of religious art. There are few known examples of his secular work, but one exception is the interior decoration of the Roger Williams Park Natural History Museum, in Providence where Nincheri lived towards the end of his life. Considered to be one of the principal masters of stained glass in Canada, he earned many distinctions. On April 6 1933, Pope Pius XI appointed Nincheri Knight-Commander of the Order of Saint-Sylvester, thereby acknowledging him as one of the great artists of the Church. In 1972, he was named Knight of the Republic in his Italian homeland. Twenty years later, Nincheri was given the posthumous title of Builder of the City of Montreal. Guido Nincheri died in Providence on March 1st, 1973, at the age of 87.
Following are our stained glass windows along with a synopsis on each.
Santa Maddalena (Mary Magdalene)
Feast Day: July 22
Patron of sinners, contemplatives, glovers and female hairstylists.
Mary Magdalene, a notorious sinner, washed Christ’s feet at the house of the Pharisee with her tears, dried them with her hair and anointed them. Christ forgave Mary, and cast seven devils out of her. She is considered to be the sister of Martha and Lazarus, and is the one who anointed the head and feet of Jesus at their home. She was transformed by the Lord’s grace and became a follower of Christ. Saint Mary Magdalene was one of the few who remained with Christ during His agony on the Cross. She visited Jesus’ tomb with two other women and found it empty. It was to her that our Lord first appeared after His Resurrection. He asked her to announce His Resurrection to the Apostles. Mary spent the remaining 30 years of her life in a remote cave, catered to by angels.
Prayer To Saint Mary Magdalene
Saint Mary Magdalene, woman of many sins, who by conversion became the beloved of Jesus, thank you for your witness that Jesus forgives through the miracle of love.
You, who already possess eternal happiness in His glorious presence, please intercede for me, so that some day I may share in the same everlasting joy. Amen.
San Pio X (Pope Pius X) (1835-1914)
Feast Day: December 3
Pope St. Pius X was born in Upper Venetia, Italy, to a humble peasant family. He was ordained as a priest, became Bishop of Mantua and was elected pope in 1903. He became known as the “peasant pope”, devoting himself to charitable work and religious reform. He refused to consent to the separation of Church and State and succeeded in raising the Roman Catholic Church in the United States to exist independently. Pope Pius “championed the cause of the Eucharist by encouraging frequent communion and by admitting children into the Eucharistic feast. Reforming the liturgy, he promoted clear and simple homilies and brought Gregorian chant back to services. He revised the Breviary and teaching of the Catechism. Pope Pius initiated codification of canon law promoting Bible reading by all the faithful. His will read: “I was born poor; I lived poor; I wish to die poor.” Many miracles have been attributed to his intercession. Pope St. Pius X said: “If you want peace in your heart, in your home, in your country, assemble together every night and say the ROSARY”. He died shortly after the outbreak of World War I. Pope Pius X was beatified in 1951 and canonized in 1954, the first pope to be canonized in nearly 300 years.
Madonna Del Rosario (Mary of the Rosary) (Our Lady of the Rosary)
Who else, but Our Holy Mother, by praying to and through her intercession are we able to reach Our Lord Jesus Christ? What a beautiful gift our Holy Mary has given to us. What a wonderful consolation to know that we can be assured of Salvation by giving just fifteen minutes a day to Praying the Rosary.
The rosary has been prayed since the thirteenth century. While meditating on the life of Jesus, one recites the prayers that bring one closer to Him and to His Mother, Mary. Beginning with Mary’s unique cooperation with the working of the Holy Spirit, the Churches developed their prayer to the holy Mother of God, centering it on the Person of Christ manifested in His mysteries. In countless hymns expressing this prayer, two movements usually alternate with one another: the first “magnifies” the Lord for the “great things” He did for His lowly servant and through her for all human beings. The second entrusts the supplications and praises of the children of God to the Mother of Jesus, because she now knows the humanity, which, in her, the Son of God advocated.
The work of Pope Leo XIII in promotion of the Rosary is a landmark in the evolving history of this most glorious prayer of devotion to Mary. More than any other pontiff, Leo wrote extensively on the Rosary. In his twenty-five year pontificate Leo touched on all aspects of the Rosary devotion, centering on the concept that by using the Rosary one could most efficaciously reach Mary, and through her intercession, her son Jesus Christ.
St. Dominic was distressed at his lack of success in his preaching in countering heresy and in his desperation turned to the Mother of God for help. She appeared to him (according to the tradition) and said to him “This is why, before doing anything else, priests should try to kindle a love of prayer in people’s hearts and especially a love of my rosary. If only they would all start saying it and persevere, God, in His mercy, could hardly refuse to give them His grace. So I want you to preach my Rosary!” When Our Lady appeared at Fatima, she told the three children that “many souls go to Hell because there is no one to pray for them . . .” How important it is that we prayer the Rosary.
Another magnificent assurance of Salvation is Our Lady’s Brown Scapular. One of the great mysteries of our time is that the great majorities of Catholics either ignores or have forgotten the Blessed Virgin Mary’s promise that “whoever dies clothed in this (Scapular) shall not suffer eternal fire.” She further stated “Wear it devoutly and preservingly. It is my garment. To be clothed in it means you are continually thinking of me, and I in turn, am always thinking of you and helping you to secure eternal life.” To obtain the fullest possible benefits from the Brown Scapular devotion, a priest must validly invest one in the Brown Scapular. Our Lady asked for this consecration in the last apparition at Fatima, when she appeared as Our Lady of Mount Carmel, holding the Brown Scapular out to the whole world. It was Her last loving appeal to souls to wear Her Scapular as a sign of Consecration to Her Immaculate Heart. She said “dress them with the garment of my scapular, and lead them to my Son, your Lord Jesus Christ!”
San Giovanni Bosco (St. John or Don Bosco) (1815-1888)
Feast Day: January 31
Patron of apprentices, boys and laborers.
Father Don Bosco was a dedicated priest who took on blood-thirsty revolutionaries, the Italian government and his own archbishop in his quest to rescue the homeless children of Turin. This heroic priest’s undying belief in the boys he sought to help inspired them to fulfill their potential in the Catholic Faith. Don Bosco’s lifelong effort to save the children of the street became the foundation of the Salesians (Society of St. Francis de Sales and later, the Daughters of Our Lady, Help of Christians for the poor and neglected girls) one of the largest childcare networks in the world. St. Don Bosco of the Salesians had a very special devotion to Our Lady of Mount Carmel and wore Her Brown Scapular. When he died, he was buried in his priestly vestments and Scapular. Many years later, his grave was opened, his body and sacred vestments in which he was buried were decayed, just dust, but the Brown Scapular that he was wearing was perfectly intact. Pope Pius XI canonized him in 1934.
Prayer to Our Lady, Help of Christians (By St. John Bosco)
Most Holy Virgin Mary, Help of Christian,
how sweet it is to come to your feet
imploring your perpetual help.
If earthly mothers cease not to remember their children,
how can you, the most loving of all mothers forget me?
Grant then to me, I implore you,
your perpetual help in all my necessities,
in every sorrow, and especially in all my temptations.
I ask for your unceasing help for all who are now suffering.
Help the weak, cure the sick, convert sinners.
Grant through your intercessions many vocations to the religious life.
Obtain for us, O Mary, Help of Christians,
that having invoked you on earth we may love and eternally thank you in heaven.
Santa Maria Goretti (Saint Maria Goretti)
Feast Day July 6 (1980 – 1902)
Patroness of Modern Youth
Maria Goretti was born in Ancona, Italy and the third of seven children and daughter of humble sharecroppers. She and her family moved to Ferriere, Italy in 1899 in search of work. Desperately seeking to support his family, Luigi Goretti struck up a bargain to work with Signor Serenelli, who had a son named Alessandro. The two families lived together in a building owned by Count Mazzolini.
Maria quickly matured in grace and holiness in the eyes of friends and other acquaintances. After losing her father to malaria, she developed great strength and maturity. Alessandro, however, lured by the passions and nurturing of the dark side of his soul, propositioned Maria on several occasions and harassed her with impure suggestions. On July 5, 1902, he would be denied no longer. As she once again rebuffed his sexual advance, shouting, “No! It is a sin! God does not want it”, Alessandro lunged, stabbing Maria 14 times. After 20 painful hours of suffering, during which she forgave and prayed for Alessandro, Maria entered Heaven fortified with the Last Sacraments. Her last earthly gaze rested upon a picture of the Blessed Mother. Almost fifty years later on June 24, 1950, Pope Pius XII stood on the steps of St. Peter’s in Rome and pronounced Maria Goretti, a Saint and Martyr for her purity of the Universal Church to half a million people. He proposed her as the Patroness of Modern Youth and set July 6th as her feast Day. Her mother, and Alesssandro, her murderer, attended the canonization ceremony together.
Prayer to St. Maria Goretti
Oh Saint Maria Goretti who, strengthened by God’s grace, did not hesitate even at the age of twelve to shed your blood and sacrifice life itself to defend your virginal purity, look graciously on the unhappy human race, which has strayed far from the path of eternal salvation. Teach us all, and especially youth, with what courage and promptitude we should flee for the love of Jesus anything that could offend Him or stain our souls with sin. Obtain for us from our Lord victory in temptation, comfort in the sorrows of life, and the grace which we earnestly beg of thee (here insert intention), and may we one day enjoy with thee the imperishable glory of Heaven. Amen
San Giovanni Battista (St. John The Baptist)
Feast Day: June 24
Born to Zechariah, a priest in the temple, and Elizabeth a cousin to Mary, John the Baptist leapt for joy in his mother’s womb at the sound of Mary’s voice, whom herself was pregnant with our Lord. Jesus said there is not “anyone greater than John the Baptist.” A greater prophet has never been born. John’s parents were quite old when John was conceived and the birth in itself was a miracle. The angel Gabriel appeared to Zechariah and said to him, “…you shall have joy and gladness and many shall rejoice at his birth, for he shall be great in the sight of the Lord. He will neither drink wine nor strong drink and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb. And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God. And he shall go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord. You shall name him John”. John, the prophet of hope, the precursor our of Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, lived and died to prepare the way for the one coming after him, the one whose sandals he was not worthy to unfasten.
John spent his time in endless prayer; separate, alone, close to God. He drank water from the river and he lived on locusts and wild honey. He went barefoot, wore a robe of woven camel hair and a simple heavy leather belt tied at the waist. John preached in the desert of Judea, the “badland”. John called the people to come out and meet God. Many thought John to be Elijah returning. Large crowds gathered to hear his voice crying in the wilderness to walk closer to God for moral renewal and baptism. John told them Messiah was coming. John asked them to share. John told the Roman soldiers to be happy with their wages and not to take advantage of the common people.
John baptized with water symbolizing the washing away of sins, but he proclaimed that the Messiah would baptize in the Holy Spirit and fire. He preached “Prepare the way for the Lord. Make his path straight”. He was called “the baptizer” because he wanted everyone spiritually cleansed in order to receive the Christ.” Finally, the day came when Jesus joined those who wished to receive baptism at John’s hands. John claimed himself as being unworthy to baptize Jesus, but did so in obedience. When Jesus arose from the waters of the Jordan, “the heavens opened and the Spirit as a dove descended. And there came a voice from the heavens, Thou art my beloved Son, in Thee I am well pleased”. (Mark 1.11).
John spoke against Herod intentions with Herodias and was cast into prison. Herod wanted to kill John the Baptist, but feared the reaction of the people as they regarded him as a prophet. Later, pleased with a dance performance by Herod’s daughter, he told her she could have whatever she wanted. She asked for John the Baptist’s head on a platter. Herod ordered that John be beheaded. Disciples of John recovered his body and buried him. Jesus and the whole nation mourned John’s death.
Saint Mother Cabrini (1850-1917)
Feast Day: December 22
The youngest of 13 children, Mary Frances Cabrini was born near Lombardy, Italy. At the age of 30 she founded the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart in an abandoned Franciscan convent. Per the order of Pope Leo XIII, she came to the United States in 1889 to do religious and charitable work among Italian immigrants, with plans of her own to later go on to China as a missionary. She became a U.S. citizen in 1909. With great skill and energy she established hospitals, schools, orphanages and convents in cities in America and all around the world. She died in one of the hospitals she established and was buried in the chapel of Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini High School in New York City. Pope Pius XII canonized her in 1946 as the first American citizen ever to be canonized a saint of the Roman Catholic Church.
San Giuseppe (St. Joseph)
Feast Day: March 19
Patron saint of a good and sweet death, because he himself died in the arms of Jesus and Mary. He is also the patron of Austria, Canada, Mexico, Peru and Vietnam. He is the patron saint of family life, hand-labor and carpenters, social justice and the Church.
Saint Joseph is the greatest saint. He is of special interest to single people, because of his caste life; to married persons, as Chief of the Sacred Family, and to fathers as Saint Joseph was the figure of God Our Father on Earth; to the consecrated and apostles in his devotion to Jesus and Mary; to priests, in his reverence for Christ and to workers as he was a worker. Jesus called himself the “son of man” in Joseph’s honor. Leo XIII offered St. Joseph as a model for fathers, by Benedict XV for workers to be under his protection and by Pope Pius XI as the pattern for social justice.
Prayer To Saint Joseph
O blessed Joseph, faithful guardian of my Redeemer, Jesus Christ, protector of thy chaste spouse, the virgin Mother of God, I choose thee this day to be my special patron and advocate and I firmly resolve to honor thee all the days of my life. Therefore I humbly beseech thee to receive me as thy client, to instruct me in every doubt, to comfort me in every affliction, to obtain for me and for all the knowledge and love of the Heart of Jesus, and finally to defend and protect me at the hour of my death. Amen
San Carlo E. Monsignor Scalabrini
John (Giovanni) Scalabrini was born in northern Italy in 1839. In high school he developed a love for the Eucharist and a devotion to the passion of Christ. He became pastor of San Bartholomew’s Church in Como. At the age of 36, he was consecrated Bishop of Piacenza. During his 29 years as bishop his visited the 365 parishes under his care, half of which could only be reached on foot or mule. He organized and supervised three diocesan synods, worked to bring the Eucharist back to a central position, dedicated 200 churches, reorganized the diocesan seminaries and reformed their curriculum. At all times he administered the sacraments, taught the faith and devised educational programs. His charity was abundant. He cultivated a singular devotion to Mary, visited the sick and prisoners, founded a special school for hearing and speaking impaired and organized assistance to young rice workers, to impoverished noble families and helped the poor to the extent of selling his horses, his chalice and pectoral cross which he from Pope Pius IX.
When he discovered people were emigrating, he championed of the welfare of emigrants. Bishop Scalabrini founded the Missionaries of St. Charles (Scalabrinians), for the moral, religious, social and legal assistance to immigrants. He later founded the Congregation of the Missionary Sisters of St. Charles (Scalabrinian Sisters).
In 1901 and 1904, Bishop Scalabrini visited his missionaries and the migrant communities, first to the United Stated, then to Brazil. The Italian and American press covered his three-month visit, most notably his visits to the Italian immigrant ghettos that had previously only received publicity for crimes. His visit brought him to U.S. cities and Canada. He visited Providence in 1901 where he was welcomed by clergy, representatives and a crowd. He wrote: “At 2:30 PM on Saturday I reached Providence, the Capital of Rhode Island, the smallest State of the Union. The welcome could not have been more cordial. On Sunday, Oct. 20, I solemnly blessed and dedicated the new and beautiful Church dedicated to the Holy Ghost”. President Roosevelt acknowledged the Italian immigrants’ abilities and sacrifices and respected the workers for their abilities and unending endurance.
Bishop Scalabrini’s activities were nourished by his deep devotion to Christ in the Eucharist and to the Blessed Virgin. He always sought holiness and invited others to meet it. Popes have called him the “Apostle of the Catechism”, “Father to the Immigrants” and “Missionary Bishop”. He died in 1905, the year of the feast of the Ascension. In 1997 at his beatification, Pope John Paul II called on him as “Father to the Migrants”. One hundred years after his historical visits to the United States, his invitation still echoes strong “Go to every part of the world …because there you will find souls who need you…they ask for the bread of the Spirit and there is no one who will break it for them”.
Prayer to Blessed John Baptist Scalabrini
Blessed John Baptist Scalabrini, you were chosen by God to become the faithful servant and guide to your people, the Apostle of the Catechism and the Father to the Migrants.
Guide us in our pilgrimage of life with the wisdom of your faith and the strength of your courage. May we face our daily struggles with the knowledge that in all that happens God’s providential love is at work in us. Lead us to fullness of life in Jesus, to harmony with one another and to openness and welcome toward our migrant brothers and sisters.
Listen to our prayer and entrust it to Jesus through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Extend your protection to all who live and work in foreign lands, to their families at home. Assist us in sorrow and distress, so that, free from fear and with a joyful heart, we may give glory to God through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Your tour would lead you back to the left front section of the Church to the Baptismal Font and the exquisite tiled wall behind it. Herein displayed is a breathtaking depiction of:
John the Baptist baptizing Jesus in the Jordan River
You would then turn to see the lovely statues…
Blessed Mother with Baby Jesus
Her Beloved spouse, St. Joseph
holding Baby Jesus
…and once again you would be facing the Holy Altar.
If at this point you were able to access the Sanctuary, you would find on the back wall a beautiful stained glass window of our defender against evil,
St. Michael, the Archangel
Upon turning around to exit the Church your gaze goes up to the choir loft and the magnificent organ dominating the area
Your eyes then come back to glance at the Stations of the Cross, the stained glass windows and of course a picture of our Holy Father, Pope John Paul II.
As you exit the door into the foyer of the church, take a moment to look to your right and view the stained glass window of Saint Cecilia tucked in the side.
Feast Day: November 22
Patron Saint of Music and Musicians
Born in Rome in the 3rd century, Cecilia, raised as a Christian, dedicated her virginity to God. Against her will, she was forced to marry a young nobleman, Valerian. Walking down the aisle, her inner voice sang out to God for help. She told Valerian if he touched her that her guardian angel would be angry and make him suffer. Valerian wanted to see this guardian angel, but Cecilia insisted he be baptized first. He was, and upon his return the angel appeared and crowned the newlyweds with roses and lilies. Valerian agreed to a life of celibacy with her. His brother also became a convert and with Valerian buried the bodies of martyrs for which they were arrested and beheaded. Anti-Christianism was rampant in Rome at that time, and when Cecilia refused to denounce her faith in Jesus, she was sentenced to be steamed to death in her own bath. Even after adding seven times the normal fuel for her furnace, she survived. A henchman was sent in to behead her and chopped her three times in the neck. She lived for three days, making the Sign of the Trinity with her fingers. Hundreds who came to plead to save her life were converted. She, her husband and brother-in-law were buried in Rome.
Prayer to Saint Cecilia
Dear Saint Cecilia, one thing we know for certain about you is that you became a heroic martyr in fidelity to your divine Bridegroom. We do not know that you were a musician but we are told that you heard Angels sing. Inspire musicians to gladden the hearts of people by filling the air with God’s gift of music and reminding them of the divine Musician who created all beauty. Amen.
Lastly, before descending the stairs, look above the handsome doorway to feast your eyes upon the stained glass window of Our Lady of Mount Carmel with Jesus.
Novena Prayer of Our Lady of Mount Carmel
O Most beautiful flower of Carmel,
Fruitful vine, Splendor of Heaven,
Blessed Mother of the Son of God,
Assist me in this my time of need.
O Star of the Sea
Help me and show me that you are my Mother.
O Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Queen of Heaven and Earth,
I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart
To assist me in this my urgent need.
O show me that you are my Mother.
God, our Father, never leaves unaided
Those for whom you pray.
Sweet Mother, I place this cause in your hands.
Many families/parishioners have graciously donated the stained glass windows, the repainting of the statues and the Stations of the Cross as well as the restoration of the windows, the bell system, the confessional, etc. Most will be listed below. Our sincere apologizes are extended to any families who have so generously contributed to our Church but were inadvertently not mentioned within this tour, specifically those who contributed to the exterior window restoration, the bells at the front and rear entrances, the marble in the foyer, marble on the altar, the baptismal font and any remaining offerings given on behalf of our beautiful parish.
Repainting of the statues:
- St. Anthony of Padua – In thanksgiving of the many blessings and favors received.
- St. Lucy – In memory of Guiseppe R. Perroni Family
- St. Francis – In memory of Frank Cavalieri by wife Caterina
- St. Theresa – In memory of Joseph and Anna Russo and deceased members of the Russo Family.
- St. Michael – In memory of Fr. Michael Sommesi from his family
- Our Lady of Mt. Carmel (both statues) and Stations of the Cross- In memory of Mr. and Mrs. Luigi and Angela Stanzione by Paul Stanzione and Family
- St. Joseph – In memory of Guiseppina Catalano
Stained glass windows:
- Statute room window – In memory of Frank and Assunta Bruno by Children
- Mary Magdalene In memory of Luis G. Codola by parents, Gerardo and Maddalena Codola
- Pope Pio X – In memory of T. Thomas and Michael J. Balzano by brothers and sisters
- Mary of the Rosary – By the Holy Rosary Society
- John Bosco – In memory of Alfonso and Carolina Salzano by Children
- Maria Goretti – In memory of Melina I. Proto by Husband and Son
- John the Baptist – In memory of Mr. and Mrs. John Ruggiero and Mr. and Mrs. Matteo Troiano by Mr. and Mrs. Anthony Ruggiero
- Mother Cabrini – In memory of Domenic and Philomena Sansone by Children
- St. Joseph – In memory of Aniello and Maria Carmine Maisano and John and Anna Maisano by Grandchildren and Children
- Bishop Scalabrini – In memory of Adelina Balzano by Children
- Saint Cecilia – In memory of Dora L. Iannuccillo, Choir Director, by Dora Iannuccillo and Choir
- Our Lady (over front doorway) – In memory of Francesco and Teresa Vellecca and Gabrielle and Maria DeFelice by Mr. and Mrs. James Vellecca
- Windows leading in Sacristy – In memory of Carmela Lillian Pasquarelli by Family and In memory of Mr. and Mrs. Bennie Mansi by Children
- St. Michael the Archangel – In Memory of Gaetano Murgo, by his Wife
- Bl. Pier Giorgio Frassati – In Memory of Vincent M. and Gilda Campagna and Fred F. and Caroline Parella, by Vincent M. and Caroline Campagna, Jr.
- Holy Thursday Window – In Honor of Henry & Rita (Moon) Zinno, by son, Rev. Henry P. Zinno, Jr.
- Holy Saturday Window – In Memory of Albert and Virginia (Maisano) DelToro, by their Children
- Front doors – In memory of Biagio and Virginia Deltoro and John and Afke Melchers – 1997
- Bell System – In memory of Matthew and Elizabeth Capone and Guiseppe and Pasqualina Fusco by Children, Matthew A and Elvira F. Capone
- Tiled wall with depiction of John baptizing Jesus – In memory of Michael A. DeLeo by Family
- Confessional – In memory of Lucia Romano Iasiello by Husband